The prosecution in the Klansman gang trial has hit another hurdle.
This after a gun and several rounds of ammunition that were handed over by alleged gang members in the presence of an undercover lawman, failed to be admitted into evidence.
The gun and 32 rounds of ammunition have been marked as exhibits for identification.
The admissions were blocked following an objection about the custody of the weapon and ammunition by defence attorney Kimani Brydson.
Tauna Thomas reports.
The undercover Policeman for a third day, entered the witness box to speak about the custody of a gun and several rounds of ammunition that were handed over in his presence.
The weapon and ammunition he had given evidence on were handed over in his presence during what he described as an intelligence mission in March, 2019 with the second witness.
The Policeman had told the court that, acting as the second witness’ uncle they had gone to a Jones Avenue-based location.
The lawman testified that the accused Roel Taylor on that day handed over a ruger 9-milli-metre pistol and defendant Joseph McDermott handed over a drink bottle containing cornmeal and 32 rounds of ammunition.
The undercover lawman in detailing his chain of custody of the weapon, said on the day it was handed over, he took the gun and ammunition to a Police station in St. Catherine.
There he said he placed the gun in a paper bag and handed it over to a Constable on duty for safe keeping.
The Police witness says he again saw the items on April 1, 2019.
At that time, he says he took back the same items from the police station and carried them to the Scenes of Crime office where they were dusted for fingerprint then swabbed and re-bagged.
The witness says he then proceeded to the Forensics Office where he submitted the items for ballistics review and was given a receipt number.
He says he didn’t see the items again until December 18, 2020 when he retrieved them from the forensics lab along with the ballistics certificate.
The Police witness was then asked to remove all the items from the bag and envelope in court.
He did and confirmed that the gun and ammunition were the same ones he handed over to the lab.
However he could not identify the second paper bag that the gun was in.
The witness said he only recognized the first bag in which he’d placed the gun.
Following this, the Prosecution made its first attempt to have the items admitted into evidence.
But Attorney Kimani Brydson objected.
He argued that from the time the lawman received the items to when he delivered them to the forensics lab, there was a break in the chain of custody, noting that it could’ve been tampered with.
The objection was upheld by Presiding Judge Chief Justice Bryan Sykes.
This resulted in the items not being admitted into evidence but instead marked as exhibits for identification.
Only the ballistics certificate was admitted into evidence.
The undercover lawman will return on Monday to continue his evidence in chief.