J’can-born QC granted bail in Trinidad corruption conspiracy charge

Queen’s Counsel Vincent Nelson was on Thursday granted his own bail in the sum of TT$100,000 to cover charges of corruption conspiracy in connection with a series of financial transactions involving legal fees during the period of the UNC-led People’s Partnership Government’s term in office.

Nelson, who was born in Jamaica, appeared for the State in several cases in the UNC led administration and reportedly conspired with former Attorney General Anand Ramlogan and attorney Gerald Ramdeen.

In court on Thursday, it was alleged that Nelson conspired with Ramlogan and Ramdeen to receive, conceal and transfer criminal property given to Ramlogan by Nelson as the advocate in various matters for the State.

It is also alleged that he conspired with Ramlogan and Ramdeen for the former to misbehave in public office with Ramlogan accepting rewards from Nelson and conspired to corruptly give Ramlogan rewards as attorney general.

The matter will be transferred to the High Court in 14 days, in keeping with provisions of the Act and Nelson’s attorney Tom Allen, QC, in seeking bail for his client, said it was part of the agreement with the prosecution that he be granted his own bail and no restrictions placed on him to leave the country.

Allen submitted that Nelson, since October 2017, has been fully cooperating with the prosecution at an “unprecedented level” and has given several witness statements knowing fully well he has incriminated himself, despite risks to himself.

Allen said Nelson was the key prosecution witness and was “safer out of this jurisdiction.”

“There is a serious risk to him remaining in this jurisdiction. He would be safer abroad,” Allen said, also adding that Nelson also needed access to his doctors to treat with his health concerns.

Ramlogan and Ramdeen who were arrested by police on Wednesday are still in police custody.