Sun | Jan 16, 2022

Farmer gets off ganja charge as cop outed for false entry

Published:Thursday | July 8, 2021 | 12:10 AMBarbara Gayle/Contributor
The witness said he was told by a policeman on duty to make the false entry.
The witness said he was told by a policeman on duty to make the false entry.

A policeman’s admission that he made a false entry in the station diary and the prisoner charge book resulted Wednesday in 64-year-old businessman and farmer Derrick Martin being freed, on a no-case submission, of possession and dealing charges for more than 500 pounds of ganja.

The trial started in the St Ann Parish Court last year October.

The allegations were that a police party went to Martin’s home in Discovery Bay, St Ann, in September 2019.

The police carried out a search and found ganja in the living room and at a storeroom on the premises.

A cop who went on the premises was called to testify for the prosecution.

During cross-examination, attorneys-at-law Hugh Wildman and Indira Patmore, who represented Martin, made an application for the prisoner charge book at the Runaway Police Station to be brought to court.

The police witness said when he and the police party left with Martin and the ganja, they went to Area Two headquarters in St Mary about 8 a.m. where the ganja was packaged, labelled, and sent to Kingston.

The attorneys suggested to the witness that the accused was taken to Runaway Police Station at 7 a.m., but he denied the claim.

When the prisoner charge book was brought to court, it showed that at 7 a.m., Martin was booked at Runaway Bay and, therefore, could not have been at the Area Two headquarters at 8 a.m. that day.

The witness then admitted that he made false time entries in the prisoner charge book and the police diary.

He said he was told by a policeman on duty to make the false entry.

The attorneys, in making the no-case submission, said the police witness’ evidence was manifestly discredited and unreliable.

The clerk of courts conceded that she could not contest the no-case submission.

Judge Vaughn Facey agreed and entered a verdict of acquittal.

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