Alleged money launderer, Trinidadian Damian Wayne Samuel who is also accused attempting to export over US$46 000 from Barbados without the necessary clearance, has been remanded to Dodds.
The 40-year-old carpenter from Sandy Trace, St Barb’s, Laventile, Trinidad will make his next appearance before the District ‘B’ Magistrates’ Court located in Horsehill, St Joseph on February 3.
Samuel is alleged to have engaged in the act of money laundering by being in possession of US$46 279 which is equivalent to BDS$91 632. 42 on January 4 – the proceeds of crime.
The accused, who is represented by attorney-at-law Shadia Simpson, was not required to plead to the indictable charge before Magistrate Douglas Frederick this afternoon.
He also was not required to plead to allegedly attempting to export the money from Barbados to Trinidad and Tobago on the same date without permission of the Exchange Control Authority which is in contravention of Section 25 Subsection 1 (a) of the Exchange Control Act Chapter 17.
Station Sergeant Glenda Carter-Nicholls objected to bail for the accused based on the nature and seriousness of the charges as well as on the ground that he is a non-national with “no strong social ties” here. The prosecutor also revealed that Samuel was in the country for a four-day stay.
“The accused can be classified as a flight risk. If granted bail he may abscond. Based on these grounds the prosecution is asking that bail be denied,” the Station Sergeant submitted.
But in her submission Samuel’s lawyer argued that he had been visiting Barbados from the age of 11, had stayed in the country for long periods, and had cousins as well as a brother here.
The defence also pointed out that Samuel was not known to the courts of Barbados or in his homeland and had no pending matters.
“The only reason the prosecution is objecting to bail is because he is not Barbadian. He has been to Barbados before, is gainfully employed and has had no skirmishes with the law. He is a fit candidate for bail,” Simpson argued, adding that her client had a suitable surety present and was willing to adhere to any conditions imposed.
The attorney also confirmed that Samuel had arrived in the country on December 31 last year and was expected to depart on January 4.
“He shouldn’t be treated any differently because he was born elsewhere,” she added.
Magistrate Frederick queried whether Samuel had any businesses based here.
The accused said: “I am a carpenter with the government. No, I don’t have businesses here.”
However, the judicial officer stated that the prosecution was fearful that Samuel was a flight risk. He said; “We will have to monitor it but at this time we will have to remand you in custody.”
Following that ruling Simpson urged the prosecution to have the matter “expedited and given priority” given that Samuel was a non-national.