Former Minister of Public Administration Marlene McDonald and co accused were yesterday charged and granted Bail of a total of 4 million dollars. McDonald’s bail amounted to two million dollars which was granted in her absence before Chief Magistrate Maria Busby Earle-Caddle in the Eighth Port of Spain Magistrates Court.
The hearing began around 3.40 pm and McDonald was not present as she was warded at the St Clair medical hospital after she complained of feeling unwell on her way to Court yesterday.
Her Attorney Pamela Elder SC petitioned that her client previous to these charges had an unblemished record and has been an MP since 2007. Her common Law husband Michael Carew was granted bail of $500,000.00 Edgar Zephrine $1,000,000.00 , Victor Mc Eachrane $400,000.00 and Wayne Anthony $100,000.00 totaling 4 million in bail altogether.
McDonald is on seven charges, Carew is on eight charges, Zephrine faces 28 charges Victor McEachrane faces five charges and Wayne Anthony is on one charge.
The summary of charges read as follows:
Between November 8, 2007, and December 5, 2013 – McDonald, Carew, McEachrane, and Zephyrine allegedly conspired to defraud the state via payments to the Provident Foundation for Development in the amount of $800,000 Between 31 March 2010 and 10 September 2010, McDonald, Carew, McEachrane allegedly conspired to defraud the State of T&T of via payments the Calabar Foundation in the amount of $375,000. July 14, 2010, Michael Carew and Edgar Zephyrine allegedly received the sum of $800,000, via a cheque dated April 12, 2010, made payable to The Provident Foundation for Development.10 August 2010 Edgar Zephyrine disposed $160,000 of government funds. September 9, 2010 Michael Carew and Victor McEachrane received sums totalling $575,000 for the Calabar Foundation in the sum of $375,000 and the Government cheque dated May 12, 2010, and another cheque in the sum of $200,000. August 11, 2017 Michael Carew allegedly received $1, 896,649.84 via government cheque. Between January 13, 2012 and December 5, 2013 Edgar Zephyrine allegedly received the total sum of $1.2 m in the name of the Provident Foundation for Development and the Calabar Foundation through a series of bank withdrawls.
Yesterday Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley having been reliably informed of the impending charges advised Her Excellency The President to revoke McDonald’s appointment.