PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad, Friday June 7, 2019 – One of three men charged in connection with a legal fees kickback scheme which allegedly took place under the former Trinidad and Tobago government, yesterday pleaded guilty to corruption conspiracy after a High Court judge accepted his deal with prosecutors that will see him testifying against his co-accused.
Queen’s Counsel Vincent Nelson, who allegedly conspired with former Attorney General Anand Ramlogan and former United National Congress (UNC) Senator Gerald Rameen, will be sentenced on January 16, 2020.
Nelson, who was granted TT$100,000 (US$14,774) bail when he was first charged last month, will be allowed to leave the country and return for his sentencing.
His formal guilty plea to charges of conspiring to commit money laundering, misbehaviour in public office, and conspiracy to commit an act of corruption, was entered after Justice Malcolm Holdip said he would accept a plea agreement reached with the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP), in accordance with section 26 of the Criminal Procedure (Plea Discussion and Plea Agreement) Act.
The judge’s ruling came two days after he heard arguments from Nelson’s lawyers and DPP Roger Gaspard, SC, on why the deal for the Jamaican-born lawyer to get a lesser sentence in exchange for being the State’s key witness in the case against Ramlogan and Ramdeen, should be accepted by the court.
Ramlogan and Ramdeen
are jointly charged with conspiracy to contravene the Prevention of Corruption
Act; conspiracy to engage in money laundering; and conspiracy to misbehave in
It’s alleged that
Nelson gave Ramlogan sums of money for granting him State briefs, and that Ramdeen
received, concealed and transferred property which Nelson gave to Ramlogan for State
briefs, on various dates between October 1, 2010 and September 9, 2015, while Ramlogan
served as Attorney General.
Ramlogan, who was granted TT$1.2 million (US$ 177,450) bail on the charges, and Ramdeen who was released on TT $1.5 million (US$ 221,812) bail, are due to return to court on June 28.
Guyana and Ghana Sign Deal for Visa-Free Travel
GEORGETOWN, Guyana, Wednesday June 12 , 2019 – Guyana and Ghana have signed an agreement that will allow citizens to travel to each other’s countries without need for visas.
visa waiver agreement was one of several bilateral agreements covering several
areas of mutual interest, which were signed yesterday after Ghana’s President
Nana Akufo-Addo arrived in the country for a two-day State visit.
General of the Ministry of the Presidency, Joseph Harmon, told the media that the
abolition of visa requirements for citizens of the two states will apply to all
holders of diplomatic, official and regular Guyanese passports.
the initial stages, they will be entitled to at least 90 days without having to
renew, but after 90 days then there will be a requirement for a renewal based
on the laws of the respective countries,” he explained.
said one of the other agreements related to Ghana lending technical support to Guyana’s
oil and gas sector.
President of Ghana made a very clear offer that they are prepared to assist
Guyana with technical cooperation with the personnel and so on to assist with
the development of the oil and gas sector,” he said.
they did was to commit to paying salaries and transportation to get them here
and what we will need to do is find accommodation for them.”
agreements on trade and industry were signed as the West African territory
expressed interest in Guyana’s timber and rum industries.
agreements were all signed by Guyana’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Dr Karen
Cummings and Ghana’s Minister for Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration
Shirley Botchwey, as President David Granger and President Akufo-Addo looked on.
President Akufo-Addo said there were “other areas of cooperation that we want to undertake – in education and transportation, a direct link between Accra and Georgetown”.
He made those comments as he met with the Ghana Diaspora and local representatives from African 0rganizations at the Marriott Hotel.
Diplomatic relations between Guyana and Ghana were officially established on May 14, 1979.
US Citizen Charged for Defrauding Caribbean Immigrants in Work Permit and Green Card Scam
NEW YORK, United States, Wednesday June 12, 2019 – A New York resident has been charged with defrauding immigrants from Jamaica and St Kitts, taking more than US$8,000 from them under the pretense that he could get them green cards and work permits, and then threatening to report them after they asked back for their money.
District Attorney Eric Gonzalez yesterday announced that James Archibald, 55, has
been charged with grand larceny, scheme to defraud, immigration assistance
services fraud, and related charges, for allegedly stealing US$8,520 from three
undocumented immigrants who hired him to process work permits and green card
applications with the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services
defendant is accused of preying on some of the most vulnerable members of our
society who were victimized as they attempted to comply with federal laws,”
a resident of Canarsie, Brooklyn, New York, was arraigned before Brooklyn
Criminal Court Judge Joseph McCormack on a 10-count criminal complaint in which
he is charged with third-degree grand larceny, fourth-degree grand larceny,
first-degree scheme to defraud, first-degree immigration assistance services
fraud, and fifth-degree criminal possession of stolen property. He was released
without bail and ordered to return to court on August 8th, 2019.
faces up to seven years in prison if convicted.
District Attorney said that, according to the complaint, between October 2016
and May 2018, the defendant, who was the owner of a company called US Caribbean
and Asian Development Organization, allegedly stole US$8,520 from three undocumented
immigrants who paid him to process and expedite work permit and green card
applications on their behalf with USCIS.
victims met the defendant through mutual acquaintances. After receiving the
payments, the victims repeatedly contacted the defendant, but he failed to
provide the promised services and they tried to get their money back. It is
alleged that the defendant told the victims that if they persisted in pursuing
refunds he would report them to USCIS. He also allegedly failed to return the
passports of two victims.
The investigation began in January 2019 after two of the victims filed complaints against Archibald with the District Attorney’s Action Center, which put them in contact with the District Attorney’s Immigrant Affairs Unit.
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