Ramlogan witness-tampering case goes to January

The content originally appeared on: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday

Attorney Anand Ramlogan, SC. FILE PHOTO –

FORMER attorney general Anand Ramlogan, SC, will return to the Port of Spain magistrates’ court in January for a status hearing of his witness-tampering case, which has been delayed because of a constitutional claim he filed in July.

On Monday, Ramlogan appeared virtually before Chief Magistrate Maria Busby Earle-Caddle.

He was expected to go on trial in July, but this had to be abandoned after he filed the constitutional claim, in which he contends the police wrongfully used the warrant process. He also contends the judge who signed off on interception orders did so on the basis of apparent bias.

Ramlogan was charged in 2017 with misbehaviour in public office and obstruction of justice.

At Monday’s hearing, the chief magistrate was told the constitutional claim had been adjourned to November 4, at which time Justice Nadia Kangaloo is expected to give further directions for a full hearing.

Although his attorneys asked for a date in November for a status hearing, and the lead attorney for the State, Edward Jenkins, KC, asked for a date in December, Earle-Caddle adjourned the matter to January 9.

She said the only “bugbear” delaying the start of the matter before her was the High Court matter, since everything has already been filed by the prosecution.

If Ramlogan’s constitutional claim is determined before January 9, when the parties return to the magistrates’ court, new trial dates will be set then.

Ramlogan is represented by attorneys Pamela Elder, SC, and Russell Warner. Appearing with Jenkins is deputy DPP Tricia Hudlin-Cooper.

The case against Ramlogan centres on an allegation by director of the Police Complaints Authority David West that Ramlogan approached him to withdraw his witness statement in a defamation case against then Opposition Leader Dr Keith Rowley in 2014.

Ramlogan is accused of obstructing justice by using threats and bribery to persuade West not to give evidence in Ramlogan’s defamation case against Rowley.

He is also accused of misbehaving in public office by improperly trying to prevent West’s testifying on Rowley’s behalf.