JUDGE HARD ON SCAMMERS - Pusey sends strong warning to culprits
Accused scammers and their accomplices will be facing a warm time when they appear in the Kingston and St Andrew Parish Court in front of Senior Parish Judge Judith Pusey.
Pusey made the proclamation last Friday while presiding over what she calls one of the "hot cases", saying she will not be easily moved to grant bail to persons accused of such crimes.
"He is part of a group of people who are literally mashing up the banking system of this country," Judge Pusey said while denying bail to 25-year-old Kevahn Watson, who is charged with making available data/device for the commission of an offence and conspiracy to defraud.
The prosecution alleged that Watson, who was employed as a pump attendant at a Total gas station, conspired with another person and allowed the accomplice to deposit illegally obtained money to a bank account Watson owns as a means of laundering the money.
However, Watson's lawyer refuted the claims, saying his client is an innocent, kind-hearted man, who got tricked into the situation. He explained that a frequent customer of the gas station where Watson was employed approached him and asked for his help multiple times.
"The man told my client he was supposed to get some money, but he lost all his bank documents. He approached my client repeatedly, and my client said no," the lawyer said.
However, Watson eventually gave in because his girlfriend advised him to help the man, the lawyer told the court.
Soon after, the financial institution noticed the irregularities in Watson's account and placed a hold on it. When he visited the bank to enquire about the hold, he was notified of the irregularities and the police were called in, after which he was taken into custody.
Watson's attorney pleaded desperately with Judge Pusey to grant his client bail. He pulled on several case laws, and even tried to play on the judge's emotions. "Look at him, Judge. I beg you, look at him. He can hardly stand up. All the police at the station sorry fi him," the lawyer pleaded, as his client fought back tears.
However, Judge Pusey was unmoved.
"You know who I look at? The poor people them who go to check their bank accounts and realise it's empty. You can make your case all you want. I will listen to you, but I'm not granting him bail," she said., "These are the foot soldiers in the grand scheme that is wrecking the economy of this country."
Watson was remanded and is to appear before the court again on October 19 as his file is incomplete.