Trinidad: UK QC charged with conspiring with Anand, Ramdeen

Charged: QC Vincent Nelson

(Trinidad Express) UK-based Queen’s Counsel Vincent Nelson has appeared in court charged with conspiring with former attorney general Anand Ramlogan and UNC senator Gerald Ramdeen, to financially reward Ramlogan for cases in which Nelson represented the State.

Nelson appeared before Port of Spain Chief Magistrate Maria Busby Earl Caddle charged with:

On various dates between October 1, 2010 and September 9, 2015, you:

– Conspired with Anand Ramlogan and Gerald Ramdeen to receive, conceal and transfer criminal property namely rewards given to Anand Ramlogan by Vincent Nelson for the said Vincent Nelson being instructed to advocate in various matters in which the State was interested or in which the State was the client.

– Did conspire with Anand Ramlogan and Gerald Ramdeen and that Anand Ramlogan should misbehave in public office of Attorney General, Anand Ramlogan accepting rewards from Vincent Nelson for Vincent Nelson being instructed as advocate in various matters in which the State was interested or in which the State was the client.

– Conspired with Anand Ramlogan and Gerald Ramdeen to corruptly give rewards to Anand Ramlogan, a person serving under the State as Attorney General, for the said Vincent Nelson being instructed as advocate in various matters in which the State was interested or in which the State was the client.

Nelson, who was taken to the courtroom this morning through a basement entrance used by magistrates and court staff, was not called upon to plead since the charges were laid indictably.

Director of Public Prosecutions Roger Gaspard appeared for the State.

Gaspard told the court that the usual course would be that a preliminary enquiry would follow Nelson’s appearance but that the State was invoking the Criminal Procedure (Plea Discussion and Plea Agreement) Act which was proclaimed law by the President in February this year.

He submitted that the matters be transferred to the High Court for a plea agreement trial since Nelson wanted to plead guilty.

The magistrate granted the application.

Nelson’s lead attorney queen’s counsel Tom Allen made a bail application, saying that Nelson had been cooperating with investigators since October 2017 when he made disclosures implicating himself, Ramlogan and Ramdeen, and had recently returned to Trinidad to give further statements to the police.

The lawyer said Nelson was not a flight risk and that “there is a serious risk to (Nelson) remaining in this jurisdiction. He would be safer abroad”.

The magistrate granted own bail of $100,000.

Within a month, the High Court is expected to hear the plea agreement trial.

Ramlogan and Ramdeen are in police custody.

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