PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad -- Hard on the heels of his bizarre voluntary admission that he conspired to conceal the discovery of a quantity of marijuana in 2013, former Trinidad and Tobago national security minister Jack Warner, who is currently charged with multiple counts of racketeering, corruption and money laundering in the United States, held a news conference on Tuesday afternoon to “reveal all the details”. This is according to a report from the Caribbean News Now.
However, many of those “details” appear to have no basis in fact or have been denied by the other individuals implicated by Warner in his admission of perverting the course of justice. According to one local observer, Warner sounded desperate, incoherent and contradicted himself at times. He is now claiming a plot against him.
In a statement issued after Warner’s media briefing on Tuesday, his successor as national security minister, Gary Griffith, repeated that the only person who informed him of the quantity of marijuana in question was Warner. No one else ever discussed the matter with him, Griffith added.
“Likewise, at no time did any police officer ever speak to me about such findings, or confirm to me that there was an illegal substance found, or a report ever shown to me of such, so how can I be involved in a cover up, as the only person who seemed to have knowledge of this was Mr Warner?” Griffith asked.
Warner also stood by his earlier assertion that he had spoken to Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar concerning the incident on April 12, 2013, when he insisted she was in New York.
An article by Denyse Renne in the Trinidad Express on June 12, 2015, simply repeated Warner’s assertions without apparently checking the newspaper’s own archives.
“The prime minister was in New York, USA, at the time [April 12, 2013],” Renne wrote.
In a follow up article by Anna Ramdass three days later on June 15, the Express finally checked its own archives and those of other publications, which showed that Persad-Bissessar left Trinidad on April 14, 2013, for New York.
Warner has now accused Ramdass, who proved that the prime minister left Trinidad on April 14, of being a government agent. He also accused the acting commissioner of police of being a government agent.
There is some local speculation that Warner is attempting to precipitate some kind of criminal or other legal proceedings against him as an excuse to delay the timely processing of the extradition request by the US.