Thursday, February 22, 2018

Not satisfied

DPP returns Partap probe to cops

The Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) is still not satisfied with the evidence produced by the police in the investigation in the matter involving former minister in the Ministry of National Security, Collin Partap, and is requesting further information.

Partap, the Member of Parliament for Cumuto/Manzanilla, was fired from his ministerial post by Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar hours after he was arrested for allegedly refusing to submit to a breathalyser test after leaving the Zen nightclub in Port of Spain on August 25 this year.

DPP Roger Gaspard confirmed yesterday that his office had written to the acting Commissioner of Police, Stephen Williams, on Tuesday, seeking the additional information relating to a "crucial aspect" of the investigation.

The DPP's request comes two weeks after Williams submitted the file to acting DPP Joan Paul-Honore on October 21.

Despite promising to deliver the report in a speedy fashion, the police took almost two months to complete their investigations into the matter.

According to police reports in the case, Partap was stopped by cops for activating the emergency siren in his vehicle and turning on the blue swivel lights at the corner of Keate and Frederick Streets, Port of Spain, where he was asked to take a breathalyser test.

Partap refused, according to the police, and was detained and taken to the Belmont Police Station where he contacted his lawyer.

It was only after the arrival at the station of acting Commissioner Williams about one hour later that Partap submitted to the test and was found to be within the legal limit.

The case attracted a public outcry over the delay by police to treat with Partap's case with urgency.

Acting Commissioner Williams also attracted negative comments because of his involvement in the matter, but he defended his appearance at the station saying that he had stepped in to take charge of the matter and that it was necessary for him to assume direct leadership in it.

Williams is currently out of the country and is expected back today, according to the communications spokesman for the Trinidad and Tobago Police Service, Sgt Wayne Mystar.

Deputy Commissioner Mervyn Richardson however told the Express yesterday he has not yet seen any correspondence from the DPP on the matter.