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Lawyer and bureau chief in flare-up

Piarco Airport Inquiry

Lawyer and bureau chief in flare-up

BY KERRY PETERS, www.guardian.co.tt

Cross-examination of ASP Wayne Boyd by the battery of defence lawyers representing the eight people charged with fraud in the Piarco Airport development project continued yesterday at the preliminary inquiry.

The inquiry is ongoing in Port-of-Spain Eighth Court before Chief Magistrate Sherman McNicolls.

The eight are former government ministers Brian Kuei Tung and Russell Huggins, Maritime executives John Smith, Steve Ferguson and Barbara Gomes, Northern Construction, Ltd executives Ishwar Galbaransingh and Amrith Maharaj, and businesswoman Renee Pierre.

They are charged with conspiring to defraud the Airports Authority of more than $19 million.

Boyd, who is second-in-command at the Anti-Corruption Bureau under Sr Supt Maurice Piggott, was again grilled for several hours, first by Vernon de Lima and then by Desmond Allum, SC, and Gillian Lucky.

A heated exchange occurred between de Lima and Boyd, who refused to help to provide the court with certain documents which de Lima deemed critical in the case against his client.

De Lima then made a stirring plea to McNicolls to have the documents presented in court, amid objections from Gilbert Petersen, who leads the prosecution.

Petersen objected, on the grounds that the seized documents were material to another case which was being heard in another court.

He said he would agree to the defence having supervised access to the documents.

De Lima retorted that of some 161 company documents seized, only 24 were made available to the court, and the remaining documents would assist in building the case for the defence.

McNicolls agreed, and eventually ordered that the remaining documents be made available on the resumption of hearing on Monday.

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Lawyer and bureau chief in flare-up
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