Three Special Reserve Police (SRP) officers appeared in court on Monday to answer charges of misbehavior in public office. They have been accused of attempting to extort cash from a Diego Martin businessman whom they accused of human trafficking.
The officers who were assigned to the Rapid Response Unit Branch in the Western Division before their arrests were all warned by Chief Magistrate Marcia Ayers-Caesar in the Port-of-Spain Magistrates’ Court, to stay away from the man from whom they allegedly attempted to extort money.
They were also ordered not to contact him in any manner either through conventional means or social media.
As the three men, Anderson Richards, Nicholas Henry and Ronald Modeste, stood before the magistrate they were read the charges as follows:
1. Anderson Richards is charged with misbehavior in public office by soliciting $4,500 cash from St Lucien Road, Diego Martin resident, Dion Babb, as an inducement not to investigate him of suspected criminal offense of human trafficking.
Richards, aged 34, lives at Second Caledonia in Morvant and has been an SRP for the last ten years. He was granted $60,000 bail with surety.
2. Nicholas Henry is charged with attempting to solicit $2,000 from Babb to not investigate a suspected case of human trafficking, alleged to have occurred on November 27 at St Lucien Road, Diego Martin.
According to his attorney, Fareed Ali, his client has been a serving member as an SRP with the Police Service for over ten years and is the father of two children, ages four and seven.
He was granted $80,000 bail.
3. Ronald Modeste is charged with attempting to obtain $4,500 from Babb to not investigate a suspected case of human trafficking, alleged to have occurred on November 30.
His attorney, Criston J Williams, said his client is 26 years old and lives at Coconut Drive in Morvant and he has strong connections with his community.
His bail was set at $90,000.
After granting the three men bail, Ayers-Caesar instructed that they are not to come into contact with the alleged victim and they are to report to the police station near their place of abode every week.
They were all ordered to re-appear in court on January 3.
SRP ANDERSON RICHARDS
SRP NICHOLAS HENRY