Where is the money?
Attorney questions status of extortion funds banker said he stashed for gang
A defence lawyer in the Clansman-One Don Gang trial yesterday raised questions about the whereabouts of the extortion money that one of the prosecution’s witnesses had testified he had safeguarded for the gang.
The witness, who said he was the gang’s banker, said that he had stored the proceeds from an extortion racket in a fridge at his home.
The witness said he also kept a record of all sums collected.
That money, he claimed, would be used to, among other things, purchase guns, ammunition and pay lawyers.
Attorney-at-law Keith Bishop, who is representing defendant Lamar Simpson, questioned why the witness had not given any evidence about what had happened to the money.
“Did he destroy [it] or did he hand it over to the police? But I suppose the police were not told about the money,” Bishop said in his closing arguments.
The lawyer said the witness could not be trusted, adding that there were several instances where he had sought to conceal evidence.
Bishop also pointed out that although the witness had told the court that he had also collected money from powerful people, he had refrained from naming them.
The lawyer also noted that the other witness’ evidence was also discredited by the defence.
“Something more ought to be looked at in order to support any conviction against my client,” Bishop told the judge.
Attorney-at-law Patrice Riley similarly asked Chief Justice Bryan Sykes to find that the ex-gangsters were not witnesses of truth.
Representing defendant Chevoy Evans, she also asked the judge to accept that the gang’s banker did not know Evans as he had misidentified him in court. She asked that all the evidence that he had given in relation to her client be dismissed.
The trial was adjourned yesterday, one day before the end of the Easter Term. It will resume in the Michaelmas term on September 19.