By the Multimedia Desk
January 29, 2015 – trinidadexpress.com
DIRECTOR of the Police Complaints Authority David West on Thursday issued a statement related to the rapidly unfolding events involving the allegations that he was asked by Attorney General Anand Ramlogan to withdraw his witness statement in a defamation lawsuit related to the failed extradition involving Section 34 applicants Steve Ferguson and Ishwar Galbaransingh, in exchange for him getting the job at the PCA. West has disclosed that as a result of claims made in the media and responses given by Ramlogan, he (West) had reported the matter to the police.
The following is the full text of West’s statement:
On Wednesday the 21st of January 2015 I was contacted by Ms Anika Gumbs who indicated to me that a source had confided in her as follows:
(i) That prior to my appointment as the Director of the Police Complaints Authority (“the Authority”) on the 7th of November 2014 the Hon. Attorney General had asked me to withdraw a witness statement which I had made on behalf of Dr Keith Rowley in Claim No. CV2012-02948 Anand Ramlogan v. Dr Keith Rowley in return for the Government’s support for my appointment as Director of the Authority; and Ms Gumbs asked me to comment on the allegation. I advised Ms Gumbs that the matter was before the High Court and therefore could not comment.
The proceedings referred to above, which are in fact pending before the High Court, are a claim by the Hon. Attorney General against Dr Rowley for damages for defamation. The subject matter of the Hon. Attorney General’s claim relates to statements allegedly made by Dr Rowley in 2011 concerning the case for the extradition of Mr Ishwar Galbaransingh and Mr Steve Ferguson with which I was involved up to 2010 as the former head of the Central Authority of Trinidad and Tobago. I was appointed as Director of the Authority on the 7th of November 2014.
In the Sunday Express Newspaper for the 25th of January 2015 an article by Ms Anika Gumbs entitled “AG DUCKS” was published. The article contained the allegations against the Hon. Attorney General on which I was asked by Ms Gumbs to provide comment.
As I sought to make clear in a radio interview on the 26th of January 2015, it is matter of public record that my witness statement was first filed in the High Court on the 27th of June 2014 on an application by Dr Rowley for an extension of time for the statement to be filed. Upon the Court of Appeal ultimately granting Dr Rowley the extension on the 19th of December 2014 my witness statement was formally filed on the 19th of December 2014. I hope this makes it patent that I did not withdraw my witness statement or provide any other inducement whatsoever to earn anyone’s support for my appointment as
Director of the Authority.
The allegations published in the Sunday Express article “AG DUCKS” suggest that the Hon. Attorney General committed serious criminal conduct in relation to his office and the administration of justice in Trinidad and Tobago. Due process demands that any such allegations should be investigated by the proper authorities and not in the media. I can disclose that I was taking steps in that regard prior to the publication of the article to ensure that I provided the appropriate authorities with the best available corroborative evidence for their
Although the Hon. Attorney General initially refused to make any comment on the matter, he is now on the public record denying categorically that he ever requested me to withdraw my witness statement in his claim against Dr Rowley. I am compelled to say publicly, without more, that my recollection of what transpired is diametrically opposed to the Hon. Attorney General’s denial that he ever approached me.
Accordingly, I have this morning made a report to the Ag. Commissioner of Police on the matter of the allegations against the Hon. Attorney General reported upon in Ms Gumbs’ article. I trust that the Ag Commissioner will take swift action on my report as he considers appropriate or as he may be advised and that due process will be ensured and the integrity of any investigation will be preserved.
January 29, 2015
6 thoughts on “David West has reported the AG to the cops”
‘Serious, very troubling’
By Clint Chan Tack
January 30, 2015 – newsday.co.tt
PRIME Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar returned home last night to face the spectre of her Attorney General Anand Ramlogan being the subject of a police investigation and numerous calls for him to resign or be fired.
Persad-Bissessar put on a brave face as she greeted reporters at the VIP lounge, Piarco International Airport shortly after she arrived home from a trip to Costa Rica via Miami.
Asked to comment on Acting Commissioner of Police Stephen Williams’ announcement of a police investigation into Ramlogan over allegations leveled against him by Director of the Police Complaints Authority (PCA) David West, Persad-Bissessar said the allegation is “serious and very troubling.”
However, she hastened to add that natural justice dictates that she meets face to face with AG Ramlogan to get the facts. She said that while she was abroad on State business, she was briefed on the issue by then acting PM Errol McLeod.
Commissioner Williams, in a media release, announced that he had ordered a a police probe into an allegation of an attempt to pervert the course of justice made against AG Anand Ramlogan by PCA Director David West.
She said that Ramlogan remains Attorney General having received no resignation from him.
Persad-Bissessar also said she was advised that another senior minister may be involved in the Ramlogan/West issue. She did not name this high-ranking minister although she said she intends to meet with this person as well.
Persad-Bissessar assured that once she meets with the Attorney General and the second senior government minister, and a clearer picture emerges, she will speak further on the issue.
Questioned about calls for House Speaker Wade Mark to step down after his admittance that it was Finance Minister Larry Howai and not the judiciary (as Mark had originally claimed) that had informed him of a lawsuit which he restricted Chaguanas West MP Jack Warner from referring to in his (Warner) no confidence motion against Howai in the Lower House last week Friday, Persad-Bissessar said, “the Prime Minister does not remove the Speaker.”
Saying she was aware of the no confidence motion against Speaker Mark by Warner, the PM said there are specific ways under the Constitution in which a Speaker can be removed and she does not have the power to remove the Speaker.
She said that while she will have to seek legal advice on the Speaker’s statement to the House, it appeared that Speaker Mark did not go wrong with the sub judice rule as covered in the House Standing orders.
It has often been said that when you attempt to put a man in a hole, you may have to get into it. Thus is the case against Ramlogan, an obviously flawed official who has attempted political assassination of the PNM to regain power. He has been tied to too many contempt actions to appear plausible in his defense. His persona is tainted by his public braggadocio behavior for which he has always taken the path of the villain.
It is therefore not surprising that most see him as not the victim he is attempting to be, but the bulldog willing to the evils of officialdom just to remain in power.
Let’s see the AG offered him the job of PCA and he accepted the job but did not drop his witness in the defamation case. But wait a minute the job of PCA is held in consultation with the Prime Minister and the Opposition Leader but the President gives the job. So there much ado about nothing….
This AG has used up his nine lives. He is under a criminal investigation. He has no alternative but to step down.
‘Griffith a bonafide witness in the case’
Senior legal and police sources confirmed to the Express late yesterday evening that Minister of National Security Gary Griffith has been identified as a key witness in the statement given by Police Complaints Authority (PCA) head David West to Acting Commissioner of Police Stephen Williams concerning the allegation that the AG asked West to withdraw his witness statement in the defamation lawsuit filed by the AG against Opposition Leader Dr Keith Rowley in exchange for the job of PCA Director. Sources confirmed that Griffith is a bonafide witness in the case.
What I think may have happened is the AG asking West to withdraw his defamation statement seeing that he was about to be appointed PCA director. The position of PCA director has to be politically neutral. Like all true PNMites the PCA director would have none of it and instead made up the story about AG giving him the job in exchange for withdrawing the defamation statement. So now there is a PCA director who has politicized the office and cannot be viewed as an independent politically neutral invidual. Same as the DPP office, but worst. David West should do the right thing and step down or the President can revoke his appointment citing a lack of political neutrality.
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