Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Vindra Murder Trial: ‘DNA belongs to kidnap victim’


Mark Fraser

THERE is a one in one billion chance that the blood samples found in the unfinished red brick house in Diego Martin where Vindra Naipaul-Coolman was murdered in 2006 is not hers, the State said on Monday.

During the course of the trial before Justice Malcolm Holdip in the Second Criminal Court at the Hall of Justice, forensic experts will give evidence that the woman who was murdered in that house was in fact Naipaul-Coolman, said senior counsel Israel Khan.

Naipaul-Coolman was kidnapped from the driveway of her Lange Park, Chaguanas home on the night of December 19 2006, eight days before she was killed, Khan said.

As the prosecution put together bits and pieces of circumstantial evidence to prove its case to the 12-member jury and six alternates during the trial, Khan told the jurors the picture would become abundantly clear that the 12 men currently charged with the murder were in fact the perpetrators.

“On January 6, 2007, around 4 a.m., PC Darrel Hunte executed a search warrant at the home of Keida Garcia at Upper La Puerta Avenue, Diego Martin. He found in the presence of Keida Garcia and Antonio Charles a black Marvin Gaye hat and a black nine millimetre firearm.

“You will hear evidence that scientific tests later revealed that the bullet casings found at the kidnapping scene on December 19, 2006, came from this gun. Also, silver-grey duct tape was found at the unfinished red brick house. Scientific tests later revealed Vindra Naipaul-Coolman’s DNA via blood on this silver-grey duct tape which was found at the unfinished red brick house.

“...Mrs Vindra Naipaul-Coolman’s DNA is cogent, compelling, convincing and credible evidence which proves beyond all reasonable doubt that she was in that unfinished red brick house at La Puerta Avenue, Diego Martin, because experts will tell us that the odds that the DNA is not hers are one billion to one,” said Khan.

He said, while at that house, Naipaul-Coolman was sitting on a pool table with her hands, feet and mouth tied with duct tape.

She was then shot once to the chest and cut into pieces with a power saw, before her body parts were placed in four garbage bags and buried below a cashew tree on a hill.

However, when some of the accused men were eventually taken into custody on January 6, 2007, for questioning and later released, they decided they needed to properly discard of the body before it was found.

In an alleged statement given to police by Earl Trimmingham — one of the accused men —Trimmingham allegedly said: “When the hole was a few feet deep we stop digging and everybody pull down de black garbage bags into de hole and me, Q and Y (letters representing names mentioned) come down de hill leaving de rest up de hill with de tools.

“Me eh know what they do with dem tools. I went home and I bathe and I went and sleep. About a week-and-a-half after that the police come and buss down on all ah we. Deh lock up everybody but leh we go ah few days after and about two days after ah hear from 76 and 51 and X tell him that as they get out of de police lock up, how dey gone and dig back out de hole and take out de garbage bags because it was real stink and they put it in de car trunk and went down Carenage where they get on 69 boat and gone out to sea with the body parts and dump it in the ocean.

The trial resumes this morning.