From the Courts
December 15, 2017
Prosecution withdraws case against man charged with damaging AIA washbasin

Without explanation, the prosecution has withdrawn the case against the man who had been charged with damaging a washbasin at the Argyle International Airport (AIA).

On Tuesday, when the case was called at the Kingstown Magistrate’s Court, the case against the 76-year-old man was dropped, more than a week after it was first laid.

Raphael Patterson, who lives in Trinidad, but is originally from Campden Park, was first charged with the offence of damage of property on December 1 at the Kingstown Magistrate’s Court, after being arrested the day before, November 30.

The charge laid against the elderly man was causing damage worth $569.70 to the property of the Government of St Vincent and the Grenadines.

Patterson was alleged to have damaged the basin after the refusal of the airport security at Argyle to allow him to travel with the a bottle of ‘Strong Rum’ he allegedly had among his belongings. He did not therefore return to Trinidad on this day, as he was originally intending to, after a two-week stay in St Vincent and the Grenadines.

Following this charge, bail was granted to Patterson on December 1 in the sum of $2,000 and a speedy trial set for last Friday. However, the Kingstown Magistrate’s Court did not sit last Friday and the case was adjourned to this Tuesday.

On Tuesday, Patterson and his attorney, Jomo Thomas, were both present for the proceedings, but the prosecution, represented by crown counsel in the chambers of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Carl Williams, indicated that they were not proceeding with their case against the defendant.

Although no reason was given for the withdrawal by the prosecution, Thomas has been reported as saying that there was “not a shred of evidence” against his client.

Magistrate Bertie Pompey made the order, as requested by the prosecution, to return Patterson’s travel documents, which had previously been confiscated.(KR)