Senior cop faces four charges

– 13 years after female officers make rape allegations

(Trinidad Guardian) – Suspended Senior Superintendent Edward Castillo was hidden by his colleagues when he appeared in court on Friday on four charges, including three sex charges, committed against two policewomen.

Castillo, former head of the Central Division, who was not handcuffed, was granted three sets of surety bail totalling $30,000 by San Fernando Magistrate Brambhanan Dubay to cover the four charges.

Dubay seemed perplexed when they read the dates of the charges, as the incidents allegedly took place at three different police stations between 2003 and 2010.

“These dates correct?” the magistrate asked when they read the first charge.

It is alleged that on a date unknown between December 31, 2008, and January 1, 2010, at the Central Police Station in Port-of-Spain, Castillo indecently assaulted a woman police officer. It is also alleged that on that same date and place he unlawfully imprisoned the woman police officer against her will.

It is further alleged that on a date unknown between December 31, 2005, and January 1, 2007, he indecently assaulted the policewoman at the Couva Police Station. It is also alleged on a date unknown between January 19, 2003, and October 8, 2003, at the Marabella Police Station he indecently assaulted another policewoman.

Castillo, who gave himself up hours earlier at the San Fernando Police Station, was not called upon to plead to the indictable charges.

Charging officer ACP Harrikrishen Baldeo, head of the Professional Standards Bureau, was in court.

Attorney Prakash Ramadhar who, along with Michael Ramroop, represented Castillo, said there was an “odour” emanating from the case which needed to be ventilated as soon as possible.

In asking for bail, Ramadhar said Castillo had been serving the country wholeheartedly for 38 years until his suspension four years ago. A father of five adult children, two of whom are police officers, Ramadhar said Castillo did not pose a flight risk. Prosecutor Sgt Gordon Maharaj did not object to bail.

Castillo was granted $20,000 bail on two charges, which were transferred to the Port-of-Spain Court for June 14. Bail in the sum of $5,000 was granted on another charge, which was transferred to the Couva Court for June 16, while the fourth charge was transferred to the San Fernando First Court for June 15.

Castillo’s friend of over 20 years John Daniel was approved as surety.

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