Monday, February 19, 2018

Bail reduced to $250,000 for man on ganja charge

A BAIL variation application was made last week by attorneys representing one of one of the men who was arrested at the Port of Spain port last month after he was allegedly found to be in possession of close to 25 kilogrammes of marijuana for the purpose of trafficking.

However, despite the bail bond being varied to a lesser amount, Stephen Thomas, 43, was taken back into prison as he was still unable to secure the bond.

The application was made by defence attorney Claude Pegus before Senior Magistrate Annette McKenzie in the Port of Spain Fourth (A) Court.

Pegus submitted that his client had been in custody since his arrest on February 25, and despite being granted bail in the sum of $300,000 upon his first court appearance, he was unable to secure the bail as a result of the quantum.

The attorney said, Thomas, a father of two, from Dundonald Hill, St James, was willing to accept any conditions the court may have been willing to attach to a lower bail bond.

“The only thing he is asking is that he not be made to report (to the police) on a Saturday because he is a Seventh Day Adventist,” said Pegus.

This prompted McKenzie to ask the attorney if he had properly apprised his client as to how the court operated.

Pegus said he had, and submitted to the court that it was his duty as an attorney to furnish the court with the instructions given to him by Thomas.

He added also that whatever condition was attached, Thomas was willing to abide by it.

His bail bond was reduced to $250,000 and he was also ordered to report to the nearest police station to where he lived three days a week, including Saturdays.

His co-accused, Lenny Applewhite, was remanded into custody pending a criminal background trace from Interpol in the United States.

Applewhite, through his attorney, Nicole Basraj, informed the court he had been deported from the US in 2002, after he overstayed his time.

Basraj asked that he be granted bail pending the arrival of the tracing, after which the bail could be adjusted if he was found to be telling an untruth.

McKenzie however, said she preferred to have the tracing available before considering bail.

They will both return to court on Friday.