INTERIM political leader of the Independent Liberal Party (ILP) Jack Warner last night broke his silence on the arrest and laying of charges against an ILP local government election candidate, telling a political meeting in San Juan that he and the party are fully backing the candidate, who remained in custody last night.
Kerwin Bucchan, the candidate for the Morvant district in the San Juan/Laventille Regional Corporation, was remanded into custody until October 10, pending tracing by Interpol after he appeared before a Chaguanas magistrate to answer five charges of shooting with intent and possession of arms and ammunition.
Bucchan, 38, appeared before Chaguanas Magistrate Bramanand Dubay, to answer five charges — three charges of shooting with intent to do grievous bodily harm to Mohammed Ali, Yaseem Ali and Kareem Ali and two counts of possession of a Taurus pistol and 12 rounds of ammunition.
Bucchan, who was dressed in a green striped jersey was represented by attorney Richard Mc Leod. He was not called upon to plead as the charges were laid indictably. In making a plea for bail, Mc Leod told the court his client is a candidate in the October 21 local government election and did not pose a flight risk as he did not have any pending matters before the court and owned his own business, a fabricating company. However, court prosecutor Sgt Shiva Boodhai, countered by saying the police are engaging Interpol following information that the accused may have charges to answer in another jurisdiction. Magistrate Dubay told Mc Leod that he was “uncomfortable” in granting bail to a person on shooting and gun related charges, especially as one of the intended victims is a minor and (the accused) may have outstanding charges in a foreign jurisdiction.
The magistrate then remanded Bucchan into custody pending the Interpol investigations.The charges were laid by police constables Beharry and Mohamed. But speaking at the rally last night, Warner said: “As far as the ILP is concerned, this man does not have a police record. He has been charged but until Kerwin Bucchan is proven guilty, for this party, he is innocent!”
“So he remains a candidate for the ILP and it is up to the people to remove him or elect him by their votes in the election,” he added.