More delays in murder inquiry …WHEN WILL SHANNON’S CASE START?

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When will the preliminary inquiry into the murder of Shannon Banfield start?

It is now three months since Shannon’s decomposing body was found upstairs of the IAM and Company warehouse on Charlotte Street, Port-of-Spain.

IAM employee, Dale Seecharan, 38, of St Helena, was charged two weeks after the discovery of the body. He has made several appearances and the prosecution is no where ready to start. What is the delay? Is Seecharan the only suspect? When will a State attorney be appointed to prosecute? When will statements be disclosed to the defence?
Seecharan was back in court on Monday.

Attorneys representing Seecharan are yet to be provided with information on which the State intends to rely on during the preliminary inquiry.

None of the information was disclosed by the prosecution, given that statements are yet to be filed before it can be served on the defence.

Seecharan appeared before Chief Magistrate Marcia Ayers-Caesar in Port of Spain’s Eighth Court.

On the last three occasions when the matter was called, defence attorney Larry Williams had called for the speedy disclosure of the information, saying that he was prepared and eager to proceed with the inquiry. Defence attorney Jamila Sealy held for Williams during the hearing on Monday.

Seecharan, who was employed at popular Port of Spain store IAM and Company, is accused of murdering Banfield sometime between December 5 and 9. Shannon, an employee of Republic Bank Limited,  was found in the warehouse of the Charlotte Street store three days after she was reported missing.

Her murder had caused nationwide outrage, prompting numerous demonstrations across the country, in which calls were made for the end of violence particularly against women.

Seecharan’s case has been postponed to April 3.

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