Jason Abdulla, one of the three men charged with dousing newspaper columnist Freddie Kissoon with human faeces, was sentenced to six months in jail yesterday, while his two co-accused in the crime, fellow PPP member Kwame McCoy and former bodyguard Sean Hinds, were found not guilty.
City magistrate Judy Latchman handed down the sentence to Abdulla and announced the acquittal of McCoy and Hinds at the conclusion of their trial.
The three men were charged with assaulting Kissoon by dousing him with human faeces during an attack in 2010.
During her ruling, Magistrate Latchman said Abdulla implicated himself in the crime through the caution statement he had given police.
It was noted that Abdulla had knowledge of the plan to assault Kissoon, watched the plan be executed and subsequently reported that the mission was completed. The magistrate said she did not find that he disassociated himself from the commission of the crime and noted that he acted in concert and fully participated in the throwing of the faeces on Kissoon.
Abdulla unsuccessfully challenged the admittance of the caution statement into evidence and subsequently, in an unsworn statement to the court during the trial, he disavowed any role in the attack.
However, the magistrate said she disbelieved Abdulla’s claim that he never had an altercation with Kissoon. She further noted that Abdulla himself admitted in his evidence that his recollection of the event is very poor.
On these grounds, Abdulla was found guilty.
Hinds and McCoy then heard that while neither of them implicated himself, they were implicated by the caution statement given by Abdulla. They, however, then heard that there was no evidence against them and as a result the charge against them was dismissed.
Prior to sentencing, Abdulla’s attorney, Glenn Hanoman, told the court that this crime is the lowest form of assault and that his client ought not to be met with a custodial sentence. He noted that the caution statement given by his client told a story of someone who played a minor role in the commission of the crime and who was following the direct orders of his employer.
Hanoman also said Abdulla suffered from the six days he spent in custody, from public condemnation and from a lengthy trial. He added that there would be no useful purpose served for a custodial sentence.
However, prior to sentencing the accused, magistrate Latchman said that she took into consideration the fact that an assault was committed, the organised manner of the crime, the fact that the event would forever be in the memory of the complainant and the need to prohibit others from committing the crime.
Abdulla was then sentenced to six months in jail.