Prosecution seeks arrest warrants for absent accused in alleged GMC fraud

The prosecution yesterday sought arrest warrants for the three absent accused, including a former Agriculture Ministry project engineer, for the alleged Guyana Marketing Corporation (GMC) fraud, where payments were approved for substandard work on the rehabilitation of the company’s Robb Street headquarters.

Currently, only former GMC General Manager Nizam Hassan and Felicia De Souza-Madramootoo have been formally charged and they are on trial.

However, former Ministry engineer Hanniel Madramootoo, his brother Philp Madramootoo, and his friend Nizam Ramkissoon, both Directors of Constantine Engineering and Construction Ser-vices Limited, which is said to be based in Trinidad and Tobago, were also named as co-defendants in the case, which was brought by the Special Organised Crime Unit (SOCU), based on the findings in a forensic audit.

The prosecutor, during a hearing yesterday, told Chief Magistrate Ann McLennan that correspondence had been sent to the Trinidad & Tobago Police Service and to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in relation to the Madramootoo brothers and Ramkissoon.

The matter, according to the prosecutor, is at the governmental level and he added that all steps have been made to have the trio present to answer to the charges.

However, when asked by the Chief Magistrate if the three men were directly told to be present in the court, the prosecutor stated no.

As a result, Chief Magistrate Ann McLennan adjourned the matter to August 7 for a report from the prosecutor.

The charge against the defendants state that Hanniel Madramootoo, who was the Project Engineer within the Ministry of Agriculture, conspired to commit a misdemeanour of procuring money to be paid by false pretence with intent to defraud, together with the others between October 28, 2010 and April 25, 2012, by continuously approving payments which were made to Constantine Engineering and Construction Services Limited for works that were “incompetently and incorrectly” done with inferior materials to rehabilitate the GMC building at Robb and Alexander streets, Bourda, fully knowing that such works should not have been approved for payments.

 

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