Just like HCU 2 years ago… Colman report goes to DPP

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Prime Minister Dr. Keith Rowley made a major declaration Friday about the Colman report on the Clico Group being sent to the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP).

But the country had previously heard a similar statement about the other aspect of the Colman investigation – the collapsed Hindu Credit Union (HCU).

In a 20-minute statement to the House of Representatives, Rowley said the Colman findings on Clico had been sent under sealed cover to the DPP.

He identified some of the offenses uncovered by the Sir Anthony Colman Commission of Enquiry.

Just under two years ago, however, the first aspect of the Colman report – which pertained to HCU – was also passed to the DPP.

On July 19, 2014, then-Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar revealed that the HCU report had been turned over to the DPP and Acting Commissioner of Police.

The investigator had recommended that 22 charges of fraud and larceny be laid against former HCU officials.

Charges are yet to be laid.

Now the Clico area of the probe has also reached the hands of the DPP, with a similar mandate.

Rowley said Clico had adopted a “defective model of business.”

Insurance funds were plowed into Clico business companies, he stated.

He said the new Insurance Bill would seek to address some of the loopholes which were exploited by the Clico Group.

He also said that the Ministry of the Attorney General is examining the current fine of $2,000 for any summoned witnesses who decline to testify before a commission of inquiry.

Clico Chairman Lawrence Duprey did not testify before the investigation.

Rowley said the total legal costs associated with the Colman probe were $78.4 million.

This included payment to the sole investigator.

The commission was set up on November 4, 2010 and met publicly for 85 days.

Thousands of investors in Clico and HCU lost hundreds of millions of dollars.

The previous administration bailed out the investigators.

No one has yet been hauled to justice with respect to any offenses at either institution.

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