Friday, February 23, 2018

DPP's newly hired QC 'seeks hearing with Colman'

Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Roger Gaspard has retained English QC Edward Jenkins to appear at the commission of enquiry investigating the collapse of CL Financial Ltd, three of its subsidaries and the Hindu Credit Union.

Sources said Jenkins is seeking a private hearing with commissioner Sir Anthony Colman.

"There might be drama tomorrow," one source noted in reference to the enquiry, which resumes this morning at Winsure Building, Richmond Street, Port of Spain.

The DPP had written to Colman, calling on him to reconsider his decision to continue the enquiry in public. He reiterated that the public enquiry had the possibility of jeopardising a "potentially strong and credible prosecution".

The letter had been in response to Colman's refusal to conduct the "potentially damaging" aspects of the enquiry in private.

The DPP has also written to Attorney General Anand Ramlogan, seeking to have him advise President George Maxwell Richards to suspend the enquiry or vary its terms of reference. The Attorney General had also refused this request.

Both Colman and Ramlogan have maintained it was contrary to the public interest to conduct the enquiry in private.

The DPP had stated he was aware the enquiry would resume hearings on December 3, and if his letter did not find favour with the commissioner, he had asked to be allowed to appear before the enquiry.

According to information on the Internet, Jenkins has a particular expertise in corporate manslaughter, serious and complex fraud, all aspects of trading standards law, criminal aspects of intellectual property, food and drugs, and murder and manslaughter.