Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : December 3rd 2015 Contents A14
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Thursday, December 3, 2015
A San Fernando labourer with 13 previous convictions
against him was spared jail time for cocaine possession
and assaulting a police officer after a magistrate found it
was useless to send him back to prison.
Senior Magistrate Lucina Cardenas-Ragoonanan ordered
Anthony Alexander to pay $4,850 and put him on a bond
to keep the peace for three
years on Monday.
Alexander, 53 of Duncan
Village, pleaded guilty to
charges of having 10.4
grammes of cocaine for
the purpose of trafficking,
resisting arrest and
assaulting PC Vialva on
His lawyer, Annalee
Girwar, said the skirmish
happened after Alexander
drank two and a half bot-
tles of Puncheon rum in
an attempt to forget his
Presenting the facts,
prosecutor Cleyon Sedan
said San Fernando police
were on patrol along
Mucurapo Street, San Fer-
nando, around 7.30 am,
Saturday, when they saw
Alexander sitting on the
He ran away on seeing
the vehicle, arousing the
officers suspicion, and
this led to a chase along
the street. After they held
Alexander, the officers
said they found a plastic packet of cocaine in his right
pants pocket. While being arrested, Alexander began pulling
away violently and shouted: "I ain t taking no lock up today."
As a result, PC Vialva received injuries to his right hand
and other officers had to assist in subduing Alexander. He
was eventually taken to the Marabella Police Station where
he was charged. Vialva went to the San Fernando General
Hospital and received a medical report.
Although Alexander had 13 convictions, Girwar said her
client had not seen the inside of a courtroom in the past
She said it was frustration over his failed relationship that
had led to his abuse but he was sorry for his behaviour.
She said the cocaine was for his own use and he had no
intention of trafficking the drug.
Cardenas-Ragoonanan then questioned his intention, ask-
ing him if he wanted to die.
She said his use of rum and cocaine suggested that he
had a death wish. She even scolded him, saying he was out
of control but supposed that sending him to jail was not
Instead, he was placed on a bond and ordered to pay
$2,500 or face six months in prison for assaulting Vialva,
$2,000 or six months imprisonment for cocaine possession
and $350 for resisting arrest.
Before he left, the magistrate urged him to let it be the
last time he appeared in court.
A hearing for a constitutional motion filed by businessman
Ravendra Bridglal for the State to return almost $.5 million
seized from him in 2014 will begin on January 26, next
Bridglal wants his
money, which was seized
at the Piarco International
Airport in January 2014,
and compensation for the
of police and customs offi-
cers involved in the mat-
ter.The motion was filed
November 26 in the San
Fernando High Court and
will be heard by High
Court Judge Eleanor Don-
Bridglal is represented
by former attorney general
Anand Ramlogan SC and
instructed by Kent Sam-
lal.Attorney Tinuke Gib-
bons-Glenn is representing
Bridglal claims that his
constitutional rights were
violated by the State as it
has refused to comply with
an order by a magistrate
directing the return of his
cash on the basis that there
was nothing illegal or illegitimate about the source of his funds,
as he was an established businessman.
In his affidavit, Bridglal, who is the owner of Phonemart
Ltd, of Southern Main Road, Warrenville, stated he was travelling
to Miami on January 28, 2014, when he was stopped by security
officers at the baggage scanning checkpoint.
He stated he was questioned by the officers and he told
them he had US$76,000 in his carry-on luggage.
Bridglal said the officer asked him whether he had declared
the money to customs and Bridglal told him he had told the
airline check-in agent about the cash and was informed that
he could proceed to travel with it in his carry-on.
The money was later seized from him by a Customs and
Excise Division officer and he was charged pursuant to Section
154 of the Customs Act. Bridglal stated he produced docu-
mentation of the business he was planning to conduct in Miami
but was informed the cash would be seized pursuant to the
Proceeds of Crime Act.
The Act states: "A Customs and Excise officer or police
officer referred to in subsection (1) may seize and detain cash
only where he has reason to believe that the cash directly or
indirectly represents any person s proceeds of a specific offence
or is intended for use in the commission of such an offence."
The money was kept by customs until July 21, when customs
officer Smith made an application for the release of the cash.
Two days later Magistrate Debby Ann Bassaw granted the
order and an order was made to have the cash returned to
The suit states that to date the cash has not been returned
to Bridglal, despite its being kept for 18 months without any
charges being brought against him in relation to the legality
of the cash.
The suit states Bridglal s right to use and enjoy his property
under Section 4 of the Constitution was violated and breached.
A declaration that Bridglal s right to protection of the law
under Section 4(b) of the Constitution was breached by failure
of the State to make regulations to prescribe the necessary
forms under the Proceeds of Crime Act is being sought.
He is also suing for damages and costs.
seeks return of $.5m
seized at airport
Drug addict with
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