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Prakash writes PM on transfer of Special Branch head

The trinidad Guardian / Former leader of the Congress of the People (COP) Prakash Ramadhar yesterday sent a letter to Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley asking him to “investigate” the alleged transfer of Assistant Commissioner of Police Ainsley Garrick for failing to take instructions from a “politician” to arrest and charge a police constable with terror-related offences.

The St Augustine MP raised the issue yesterday at a press conference at his Tunapuna office as he called on Rowley to probe what triggered Garrick’s transfer.

Last Sunday, Ramadhar said he became concerned after reading a daily newspaper, which stated that Garrick, who once headed the elite Special Branch unit, had been transferred after he failed to take instructions from a politician to lay charges against a PC who had been absolved of having any link to a terrorist organisation.

The transfer led to Garrick applying for leave with immediate effect.

If the content of the article was true, Ramadhar said, the politician stood accused of misbehaviour in public office and perverting the course of justice.

The letter sent to Rowley was also copied to President Anthony Carmona, Director of Public Prosecutions Roger Gaspard, chairman of the Integrity Commission Zainool Hosein and head of the Police Complaints Authority David West.

Ramadhar said the country’s rule of law ensuredthat preservation of the independence of its institutions and the separation of powers were important to its democracy.

He said: “No politician in this country should have the authority or belief that they could instruct any officer of the Police Service to lay charges against anyone.”

Calls and text messages were sent to both Williams and Dillon on the matter. However, there was no response up to late yesterday.

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