King’s Counsel Caroline Haye has refuted assertions that politics led to the prosecution of Dr. Perceval Bahado-Singh and Floyd Grindley in the Petrojam fraud trial.

KC Haye, who is the lead prosecutor in the case, made the remark during her closing arguments in the Kingston and St. Andrew Parish Court on Monday. 

Dr. Bahado-Singh, the former Chairman of Petrojam, is on trial for claiming reimbursement for fraudulent overseas trips and meetings at the company. The cost of those trips amounted to more than US $73,000.

Mr. Grindley, who is the former general manager of the state run oil refinery, is accused of aiding and abetting Dr. Bahado-Singh.

Shaloy Smikle has been covering the case. 

The lead prosecutor says there’s no evidence of political motivation behind the case.

She made the assertion after attorney representing Dr. Bahado-Singh, Bert Samuels, told the court in his closing argument that the case was politically and maliciously derived.

Instead, King’s Counsel Haye says the case is built on both Dr. Bahado-Singh and Mr. Grindley working together to defraud the company. 

She says there’s no challenge to the fact that Dr. Bahado-Singh asked for reimbursements.

King’s Counsel Haye, however, told the court that those reimbursements couldn’t have been made without the signature of the general manager.

She says as the general manager, Grindley had the final authority to protect the company’s assets.

She further told the court that Dr. Bahado-Singh’s claims that he was unaware of Circular 21 are questionable.

Circular 21 outlines the rules regarding overseas travel and the process for reimbursement.

King’s Counsel Haye says Dr. Bahado-Singh sits on at least three boards associated with the company.

She told the court of a particular meeting, where she said Dr. Bahado-Singh was asked if he read a particular handbook, to which he responded yes.

King’s Counsel Haye says if he had indeed read the handbook, he would have known about the company’s policy regarding overseas travel.

She further asserted that even if he didn’t know, it should have been Dr. Bahado-Singh’s duty to clarify how his finances would’ve been handled during his time at the company.

The accused men both told the court in their un-sworn statements that they were neither friends nor close companions during their time at the company.

But King’s Counsel Haye says the evidence doesn’t support that claim.

She told the court of a 2017 document, which she says showed that Mr. Grindley requested travel permission for himself and then later for Dr. Bahado-Singh.

She also told the court of another letter in which she said Mr. Grindley was asked to attend a meeting at the request of Dr. Bahado-Singh.

She again questioned how the accused claimed they didn’t know each other well.

The matter continues Tuesday morning at 10.