IN WHAT is the biggest corruption case within recent years, former attorney general Anand Ramlogan and UNC Senator Gerald Ramdeen are expected to appear in the Port of Spain Magistrates Court today to answer several charges.
Their court appearance is the end result of a quiet, two-year investigation by the Anti-Corruption Investigations Bureau (ACIB) into a billion-dollar scandal involving briefs given to lawyers during the tenure of the then People’s Partnership (PP) administration.
British Queen’s Counsel, Jamaica-born Vincent Nelson last Thursday appeared in court on three similar charges and has agreed to a plea deal with the prosecution in exchange for his testimony against Ramlogan and Ramdeen.
Nelson, who benefitted from over $20 million in legal fees, represented the PP in several matters for the State, including the Petrotrin/Malcolm Jones matter, cases involving UTT, UDeCOTT, Las Alturas, Eteck, Clico, Ministry of Finance and the Board of Inland Revenue.
Ramlogan was arrested last Wednesday at Piarco International Airport where he was to board a flight while Ramdeen surrendered to police later that day. During interrogation between Thursday and Friday last, both men complained of feeling unwell and were taken to hospital for treatment.
On Friday at 10 pm, they were formally charged at the ACIB office in Port of Spain in the presence of their attorneys, Pamela Elder, SC, for Ramlogan and Mario Merrit for Ramdeen, and were released from police custody on a total of $2.7 million bail.
Ramlogan received $1.2 million bail while Ramdeen received $1.5 million, both signed by a Justice of the Peace at the ACIB office. Police said the two were jointly charged with conspiracy to contravene section 3 of the Prevention of Corruption act; conspiracy to contravene section 45 of the Act and conspiracy to misbehave in public office.