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26 witnesses in case against cop

By Innis Francis innis.francis@trinidadexpress.com

TWENTY-SIX witness statements have been prepared as evidence in the case against Police Constable Valentine Eastman, who is charged with human trafficking.
State attorney Trevor Jones said yesterday that 11 statements have been filed, seven were pending and eight still outstanding.
Jones said he was hoping that by the end of the month all should be sworn, filed and served.
The matter is being heard by Deputy Chief Magistrate Mark Wellington in the San Fernando First Magistrates’ Court.
Jones said because the virtual complainants were foreigner nationals, they would need a reasonable time to make arrangements to attend court.
He said if attorney Subhas Panday, who is representing Eastman, has to cross-examine the witnesses, the court would also need a Spanish interpreter in the matter.
Jones said everything is in place but he needed the rest of the month to put his “house in order”.
Police complainant Constable Ramlogan was present in the first-ever case of its kind in Trinidad and Tobago.
Eastman, 52, is facing ten charges linked to allegations of exploitation and prostitution.
Eastman, of Princes Town, was charged with allegedly carrying women to a place in Vistabella, San Fernando between March 3 and March 25 of last year for the purpose of exploitation and prostitution.
Eastman, who has 25 years’ service as a police officer, was denied bail at his first court appearance. He was subsequently placed on $350,000 bail with the condition that he report to Princes Town Police Station four times a week.
The case was adjourned to April 15.
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