T&T police service commission troubled over crossed lines on Jack Warner probe

(Trinidad Express) The Police Service Commission (PSC) views “very seriously” the “apparent contradiction” between statements of Director of Public Prosecutions Roger Gaspard and Commissioner of Police Dwayne Gibbs on the issue of investigations into bribery allegations against Jack Warner and others at the Hyatt Regency Hotel, Port of Spain, in May 2011.

This was stated yesterday by chairman of the PSC, Dr Ramesh Deosaran.

He said the Commission would examine the issue “which has serious implications”, at its statutory meeting on Monday.

Deosaran told the Express the Commission held a preliminary discussion on the matter yesterday and it would be put formally on the agenda at Monday’s statutory meeting when there would be a full discussion and a formal position taken.

Deosaran was commenting on statements by Opposition Leader Dr Keith Rowley that he (Deosaran) had a duty to release the correspondence of the CoP to the PSC.

The PSC had written to Rowley on May 7, 2012 stating the CoP informed it the matter was investigated by the Police Service and “on the action of the Director of Public Prosecutions, no further action can be taken in this matter”.

In the letter the phrase “on the action of the Director of Public Prosecutions, no further can be taken in this matter” was put in quotation.

Deosaran confirmed yesterday the excerpt of the PSC’s letter which was put in quotation marks, came directly from the Commissioner’s letter.

“This matter is very important and we would have to take a serious note of it,” he said. The Commission would keep the public informed on the issue which had “serious implications”.

The correspondence from the PSC to Rowley revealing Gibbs informed it by letter dated March 21, 2012 that the DPP indicated no further action could be taken, is at odds with the memorandum written by Gaspard dated March 20, 2012 to the investigator,

Assist Supt of Police, Totaram Dookhie wrote. “Please be advised that from my perusal of the rather threadbare information and materials submitted to me, I am unable to discern any contravention of the laws of Trinidad and Tobago by any person. However, I am also of the view that further investigations may be warranted pursuant to the Customs Act Chap. 78: 01.”

On Tuesday, the DPP told the Express the Commissioner was either misstating, erroneously conveying or accurately characterising the advice he (Gaspard) gave.

Gibbs has thus far said nothing on the matter.

Rowley said yesterday there were two letters in the public domain—one from the PSC to him saying one thing and another from the DPP to the CoP saying something else. “The DPP has made his position very clear. And it was misrepresented that he advised the termination of an investigation, when in fact he didn’t. So it is now for the Commissioner of Police and the chairman of the Police Service Commission to tell the country how these wires got so crossed. Who misrepresented the DPP’s position to the PSC? And if it is not so, then let the CoP come out and say he did not tell the PSC that,” the Opposition Leader said.

Rowley said, with the exception of the letter from the CoP to the PSC, the other letters on the issue were in the public domain. Therefore, he said, Deosaran had an obligation to release this “missing piece of the puzzle” (the letter from the CoP to the PSC) so that “there can be no ambiguity” and so that the public would know who stated the DPP advised the investigations be abandoned. “I am patiently waiting for that (release of the letter). And in fact I am surprised that the PSC has been silent on this issue so far.”

 

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