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Ettian Charles

The defendant Ettian Charles. (iWN file photo)

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Carlos James, the lawyer representing burglary accused, Police Constable Ettian Charles, has suggested that his client fears for his safety as he was granted bail on Wednesday.

Charles is charged with the July 7, 2017 burglary of the St. Vincent and the Grenadines Postal Corporation, during which he is alleged to have stolen EC$74,121.46 in cash and other items, valued an additional EC$17,486.96.

He was further charged that on July 7, 2017, at Kingstown, being employed in the Public Service and being charged with the performance of duty by virtue of such employment, agreed to receive property for himself or any other person on account of anything omitted to be done by him in the discharge of his duty of office as a policeman.

He was denied bail when he appeared in court in July 12 and 19, when the Crown argued that releasing him could affect the investigation.

The prosecution did not object to his bail on Wednesday and Chief Magistrate Rechanne Browne-Matthias granted Charles bail when he reappeared before her at the Serious Offences Court.

Bail was set in the sum of EC$130,000 with one surety.

Charles was ordered to report to police on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays between 6 a.m. and 6 p.m.

James told the court that his client, who lives in Glen, has certain concerns relating to reporting to police in Calliaqua, a town nearby.

He asked the court to allow his client to report to police at the Questelles Police Station, located in south leeward, some four miles away from Kingstown and eight miles from his hometown.

Two weeks earlier, James had asked the court to order that Charles not be held at Her Majesty’s Prison because of safety concerns that might arise in light of his job.

The court said it would not pronounce on this, with the magistrate saying that the lead investigator, Detective Corporal Bion Duncan, would make the relevant arrangements.

iWitness News understands that Charles was remanded at the Biabou Police Station.

The court also ordered Charles to surrender all his travel documents and to seek the expressed permission of the court to leave the jurisdiction.

The court also ordered that stop notices be placed at all ports of entry and exit.

A number of Charles’ relatives, including his blind, elderly father, turned up to court on Wednesday.

During his first court appearance two weeks earlier, James had told the court that Charles’ parents own a property worth more than EC$200,000 and was prepared to surrender it to the court as security for bail.

However, when bail was granted on Wednesday, the court was informed that there were some issues with the property in question, as a loan used to finance it was in arrears with a local commercial bank.

Bail was not posted when the court was adjourned for the day, shortly after 10 a.m.

Charles is slated to return to court on Oct. 19.

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