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Friday 19 April 2019
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State to pay $.4M to 8 men

THE State has agreed to pay a little over $.4 million to eight men who were arrested during the state of emergency in 2011.

Hundreds of people were detained during the limited state of emergency called by then prime minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar on August 21, 2011, which ended on December 6 of that year, in response to a wave of violent crime.

Many of those arrested were charged under the Anti-Gang Act and during that time were discharged on the advice of the Director of Public Prosecutions owing to lack of evidence.

A rash of lawsuits soon followed and the state was forced to pay out hundreds of thousands in malicious prosecution and false imprisonment cases.

On Tuesday, eight men, who filed similar cases in the High Court, agreed to withdraw their claims for malicious prosecution after the state agreed to pay for their false imprisonment.

According to the settlement reach, the state agreed to pay a total of $429,697.91 if the eight withdrew their malicious prosecution claims.

They did and on Tuesday the settlement was signed off by Justice Frank Seepersad in the Port of Spain High Court. The eight men - David Williams, Ronald Cobham, Richard Weekes, Derek Miller, Jules Eligon, Kadeem Weekes, Kerwin Issac and Akiel Kareem Sherwood - were represented by attorney Ronald Simon. State attorney Corinne Findlay appeared for the State.

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