October 21, 2020

Trinidad police say no “nudging” in emailgate investigation

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Kamla-Persad-BissessarFrom CARIBBEAN360

PORT-OF-SPAIN, Trinidad, Monday April 27, 2015, CMC – The Trinidad and Tobago Police Service (TTPS) Monday said it was not being “nudged” into announcing the outcome of an investigation into so-called “Emailgate” after Prime Minister Kamla Persad Bissessar questioned the delay by the police in providing the public with the outcome of its probe.

Acting Police Commissioner Stephen Williams speaking on a television programme here also said that the police could not state when the probe would be concluded.

”There is the issue of politics in relation to this inquiry but there is no behind the scene nudging” he told television viewers.

On Sunday night, as she addressed the 26th anniversary of the ruling United National Congress (UNC), Prime Minister Persad Bissessar said that her coalition administration would be moving towards having Opposition Leader Dr. Keith Rowley suspended from the Parliament after accusing him of using providing false information to legislators in the “Emailgate” scandal.

She told party supporters that the so-called emails that Rowley read out in Parliament suggesting that she and senior members of her government were involved in a plot to undermine several state institutions including the judiciary were a hoax.

“These are the facts, three sources have now shown that the e-mails have no substance, there is no truth, there is no basis for the fake e-mails Dr Rowley read in Parliament,” she told supporters, listing among the sources, the United States Justice Department.

“We will deal with him in Parliament…I’ve already advised Dr (Roodal) Moonilal, based on these documents and others which we will deal with in the Parliament, we will file a motion of censure again against Dr Rowley on emailgate, but we will not stop there…we will also call in the House for Dr Rowley to be suspended from the service of the House,” she added.

“I have legally all the Google records pursuant to a court order in the case filed by the Integrity Commission and all the e-mails for the month of September which Rowley sent out were fake.

“Not a single e-mail remotely resembled anything that he read. Three sources have said there is no substance, no truth and no basis for the fake e-mails that Rowley read. We gave full authority to disclose those records and tonight I call on the police to state whether there was any e-mail as Rowley said.

“Should the conclusion of the report indicate that the contents of the e-mail were fake and criminal proceedings undertaken, the Opposition leader must immediately resign from his seat,” she said.

In 2013, Rowley told legislators that he had received in December the previous year, a total of 31 emails, from a “whistle blower” indicating how operatives within the government had sought to undermine those institutions including the Office of the Director of Public Prosecution (DPP) and the media.. He said he had passed them on to the Office of the President.

Rowley said the emails, dating back to September 2012, were from people concerned with the government’s defence of the early proclamation of Section 34 of the Administration of Justice (Indictable Proceedings) Act that had the effect of allowing people, whose trial has not started after a 10-year period to walk free and a verdict of not guilty entered against their names.

Critics say that the clause was aimed at supporting businessmen Ish Galbaransingh and Steve Ferguson, who have been described as financiers of the ruling United National Congress (UNC), the biggest partner in the four-member coalition government.

The two are facing fraud and laundering charges relating to the re-development of the Piarco International Airport in 2001. They are also wanted in the United States on a number of related charges.

Rowley told legislators that the contents of the email collaborated strongly with events that unfolded in the country the previous year as the government sought to defend its decision over the controversial legislation and read into the Hansard, the exchange of correspondences between people with email addresses like “[email protected], [email protected], [email protected] and [email protected] purporting to come from senior government ministers and officials.

William told television viewers that the Deputy Commissioner of Crime Glen Hackett was in consultation with the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions on “finalising that inquiry.

“What we have done is take an approach where the police service has engaged with the Office of the DPP, not with the DPP because in that matter, his name has been raised in that matter and the DPP has assigned for our interaction the deputy DPP.

“So the police service have been working with the deputy DPP on the key requirements of that investigation and on that guidance they continue to explore different aspects. At present they are seeking to finalise the inquiry’.

He said he was not in a position to state how long it would take.

“Would it take a week, two weeks, three weeks I can’t sat, I am not leading the inquiry,” he said, adding “it is at this point where we are seeking to finalise the inquiry and when the inquiry is finalised the Deputy Commissioner will go public with the outcome”.

For more on this story go to: http://www.caribbean360.com/news/trinidad-police-say-no-nudging-in-emailgate-investigation#ixzz3YX1IAeVs

 

Kamla calls for Rowley’s suspension from Parliament over “Emailgate” scandal

From CARIBBEAN360

PORT-OF-SPAIN, Trinidad, Monday April 27, 2015, CMC – The coalition People’s Partnership government says it is moving towards having Opposition Leader Dr. Keith Rowley suspended from the Parliament after accusing him of providing false information to legislators in the so-called “Emailgate” scandal.

Prime Minister Kamla Persad Bissessar addressing the 26th anniversary of the ruling United National Congress (UNC) in Couva, Central Trinidad, on Sunday night, said that the so-called emails that Rowley read out in Parliament uggesting that she and senior members of her government were involved in a plot to undermine several state institutions including the judiciary were a hoax.

“These are the facts, three sources have now shown that the e-mails have no substance, there is no truth, there is no basis for the fake e-mails Dr Rowley read in Parliament,” she told supporters, listing among the sources, the United States Justice Department.

“We will deal with him in Parliament…I’ve already advised Dr (Roodal) Moonilal, based on these documents and others which we will deal with in the Parliament, we will file a motion of censure again against Dr Rowley on emailgate, but we will not stop there…we will also call in the House for Dr Rowley to be suspended from the service of the House,” she added.

In 2013, Rowley told legislators that he had received in December the previous year, a total of 31 emails, from a “whistle blower” indicating how operatives within the government had sought to undermine those institutions including the Office of the Director of Public Prosecution (DPP) and the media.. He said he had passed them on to the Office of the President.

Rowley said the emails, dating back to September 2012, were from people concerned with the government’s defence of the early proclamation of Section 34 of the Administration of Justice (Indictable Proceedings) Act that had the effect of allowing people, whose trial has not started after a 10-year period to walk free and a verdict of not guilty entered against their names.

Critics say that the clause was aimed at supporting businessmen Ish Galbaransingh and Steve Ferguson, who have been described as financiers of the ruling United National Congress (UNC), the biggest partner in the four-member coalition government.

The two are facing fraud and laundering charges relating to the re-development of the Piarco International Airport in 2001. They are also wanted in the United States on a number of related charges.

The government later repealed the section and Prime Minister Persad Bissessar dismissed her then justice minister, Hebert Volney, a former High Court judge, on the grounds that he misled Cabinet into believing that the Chief Justice Ivor Archie and the Director of Public Prosecution (DPP), Roger Gaspard, had supported the idea of the early proclamation.

Rowley told legislators that the contents of the email collaborated strongly with events that unfolded in the country the previous year as the government sought to defend its decision over the controversial legislation and read into the Hansard, the exchange of correspondences between people with email addresses like “[email protected], [email protected], [email protected] and [email protected] purporting to come from senior government ministers and officials.

Prime Minister Persad Bissessar said while the email address was hers, she was not the author, and that she had passed them to the police for investigation.

The emails allege exchanges between Persad Bissessar, then-attorney general Anand Ramlogan, former minister of local government Surujrattan Rambachan and then-national security adviser, Gary Griffith.

As she addressed the UNC public meeting on Sunday night, Prime Minister Persad Bissessar called on the police to release the information regarding their investigation into the emailgate, saying the country was heading into a general election.

“I have legally all the Google records pursuant to a court order in the case filed by the Integrity Commission and all the e-mails for the month of September which Rowley sent out were fake.

“Not a single e-mail remotely resembled anything that he read. Three sources have said there is no substance, no truth and no basis for the fake e-mails that Rowley read. We gave full authority to disclose those records and tonight I call on the police to state whether there was any e-mail as Rowley said.

“Should the conclusion of the report indicate that the contents of the e-mail were fake and criminal proceedings undertaken, the Opposition leader must immediately resign from his seat,” she said.

During her address, Prime Minister Persad Bissessar said she would not be rushed into naming a date for the general election that must be held no later than September 17 this year.

“Today, speculation is all over that I am going to announce the election date today. But listen carefully, the last time a man tried that he lost the election when he called it before time” she said, an obvious reference to former prime minister Patrick Manning who called an early poll in 2010 and lost..

“I say my track record speaks for itself. We have held every single election within time, according to the laws of Trinidad and Tobago. Today, I say I will continue to comply with the law. I give you the assurance that I will call the elections when the elections are constitutionally due under the law.”

“No one will jumbie me to call an election before it is due. They could jump high, they could jump low, no election date will be announced before it is due. They could bark and shout, we will call it when it is due,” she told supporters at the UNC celebrations that were not attended by the party founder and former prime minister Basdeo Panday.
IMAGE: PRIME MINISTER KAMLA PERSAD BISSESSAR (FILE PHOTO)
For more on this story go to: http://www.caribbean360.com/news/kamla-calls-for-rowleys-suspension-from-parliament-over-emailgate-scandal#ixzz3YX1ierN0

 

Trinidad AG calls emailgate scandal a “diabolical, evil and wicked plot”

From Caribbean360

anand-ramlogan-740PORT-OF-SPAIN, Trinidad, Monday August 25, 2014, CMC – Attorney General Anand Ramlogan says the “emailgate” scandal was a “diabolical, evil and wicked plot” aimed at destroying the People’s Partnership government after indicating that the US-based search engine, Google, had said no such emails existed.

But the main opposition People’s National Movement (PNM), whose leader, Dr. Keith Rowley brought the emails to light during a parliamentary session in May 2013, said the country should await the outcome of the investigation being conducted by the Integrity Commission and the police.

“We do not accept the AG’s version as an interested third party as to what has happened in this matter. He is properly entitled to seek to defend himself, but I don’t want for the population to run away with the story that this matter has been put to rest. Do not be fooled by these charades. The jury is still out and the investigation is still ongoing,” said PNM public relations officer, Faris Al-Rawi.

Ramlogan told a news conference Sunday that he had received a certified affidavit from Google Inc which invalidates the entire emailgate scandal.

“I can breathe a sigh of relief because this has been a very trying time for me personally,’ Ramloan said, noting that “it is the first time that I have been accused of such… of any criminal wrongdoing in my lifetime, and the nature of the crimes that were alleged to have occurred including attempting to…conspiring with the Prime Minister to attempt to murder a journalist, bugging the DPP’s (Director of Public Prosecutions) office to spy on the DPP, open corruption speaking about building a helipad and passing this in e-mails between the Prime Minister and myself,” Ramlogan said.

Rowley on May 20, 2013 told Parliament he had received 31 emails purporting to show correspondence between Prime Minister Kamla Persad Bissessar, Attorney General Anand Ramlogan, Local Government and Works Minister Suruj Rambachan and then security adviser Gary Griffith, in a sinister move to undermine the judiciary, the Office of the Director of Public Prosecution and the media.

Rowley said the emails, dating back to September 2012, were from people concerned with the government’s defence of the early proclamation of Section 34 of the Administration of Justice (Indictable Proceedings) Act that had the effect of allowing people, whose trial has not started after a 10-year period to walk free and a verdict of not guilty entered against their names.

Critics say that the clause was aimed at supporting businessmen Ish Galbaransingh and Steve Ferguson, who have been described as financiers of the ruling United National Congress (UNC), the biggest partner in the four-member coalition government.

The two are facing fraud and laundering charges relating to the re-development of the Piarco International Airport in 2001. They are also wanted in the United States on a number of related charges.

The government officials have all denied the accusations and Prime Minister Persad Bissessar and Ramlogan have filed pre-action protocol letters alleging that Rowley on May 23, 2013, at a public meeting continued to use the e-mails as the basis for his assertion.

Ramlogan, flanked by his attorney, Senior Counsel Pamela Elder and Christopher Sargent, a partner at the US-based ComputerLaw Group LLP, who was present through Skype technology, said he intends to seek legal action against Rowley.

Ramlogan presented a certified affidavit signed by Chi Nguyen, the custodian of records at Google Inc, which stated “a diligent search and reasonable inquiry of Google’s records produced no information regarding the e-mail [email protected]”.

But paragraphs seven and eight of Nguyen’s affidavit stated “[email protected]” and “[email protected]” were both active accounts owned by Ramlogan and Persad-Bissessar, respectively.

Ramlogan said Google provided all the e-mails between himself and Persad-Bissessar during September 2012 when the emailgate correspondence occurred. He said none of those e-mails sent by Google corresponded to the claims made by Rowley.

Elder said the e-mails provided by Rowley were forged.

“In essence, those documents which were stated to be e-mails and which were moved between certain accounts belonging to the honourable Attorney General and the honourable Prime Minister, they do not exist,” Elder said.

She said the disclosure by Google showed that “those documents which were passed off, which were laid in the House by the honourable Leader of the Opposition, they are not authentic.

“Not are they only not authentic, they did not emanate from the e-mail account of the honourable Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago and the honourable Attorney General,” Elder said, adding “we have reached at a position now that you have from Google that those documents which were passed off as e-mails do not exist.

“Where do we go from here? Well I know what I will be doing, I would be immediately writing the acting Commissioner of Police, the Integrity Commission, the Director of Public Prosecutions to do all that is necessary to unearth the co-conspirators to this evil plot.

“We do not know who they are, but what we know today is that there is a conspiracy of the most vicious nature, so those miscreants to whom the word honour has no meaning, they have to be unearthed and that is the position I take today.”

Sargent said he had filed a Notice of Pendency of Other Action or Proceeding at the United State District Court in the Northern District of California aimed at showing the application filed recently by the Integrity Commission during its investigation into the emailgate scandal was unnecessary.

“(This was intended) to bring this matter to the attention of the judge because to avoid multiplicity of proceedings. If Google has already conducted a search then it is an exercise in futility for another search of a similar nature to be conducted,” Elder said, adding she is now awaiting a response from Rowley, who is out of the country.

Ramlogan said he intends to sue Rowley for defamation of character.

“It’s been a long journey with a cloud of suspicion unnecessarily lurking and hanging over my head, but I am very happy that this revelation and vindication has come because we have been, from day one, very confident that this day will come,” Ramlogan said, adding he would not rest until justice is served.

But Al-Rawi said that the timing of the release of the information by Ramlogan was curious given that it was coming two days before the Senate debates the controversial Constitution Amendment Bill that allows for the recall of legislators, a run-off in a general election if a candidate fails to win 50 per cent of the vote cast and a two-cpnsecutive term for a prime minister.

While the House of Representatives approved the bill with two government ministers voting against and another abstaining, the government needs at least one independent member among the 31-member Senate to get approve for the legislation.

“I am confident that the Attorney General did not get this information on Sunday. It is therefore curious that he should choose on a Sunday evening to make these disclosures when the Constitution (Amendment) Bill is on Tuesday,” said Al-Rawi, urging the nation “not to be fooled by government’s charade”.

He said the public is unaware whether e-mails could have been sent prior or subsequent to the period when the attorney general sought information from Google.

“So the Attorney General’s request for disclosure in the limited period of September 1 to 30 from Google and the affidavit and disclosure from Google, coming as they are, are tailor-made to what he asked them to look for,” said Al-Rawi, an attorney.

“No doubt the story would dominate the media Monday. I am confident the AG did not receive this information on a Sunday, but it is convenient for him to exercise what he has done by putting it in the public domain so that Monday’s news is changed away from the savagery which they are conducting against the citizens of this country,” Al Rawi said.

“The PNM calls for the public’s response to this matter meaning the police and the Intregrity Commission. We are not satisfied the population should be appeased by an interested party, meaning Mr Ramlogan and the Prime Minister (making these disclosures). We wish to remind the population that the very disclosures by Mr Ramlogan prove the propriety of Dr Rowley going into the Parliament and calling for an investigation,” he said, insisting that the affidavit coming out of Google was “tailor made” for what Ramlogan asked them to look for.

““This matter is still pending. The official investigation, the Integrity Commission and the police are yet to speak on this issue. The jury is still out and the investigation is still ongoing,” Al Rawi said.

IMAGE: Trinidad & Tobago Attorney General Anand Ramlogan (File photo)
For more on this story go to: http://www.caribbean360.com/news/trinidad-ag-calls-emailgate-scandal-a-diabolical-evil-and-wicked-plot#ixzz3YX0gGycZ

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