Paul Clarke of Sacred Heart RC Church hugs former police constable
Ronald Doorgadeen outside the Hall of Justice yesterday after
he was freed. Centre is Doorgadeens mother.
Photo: Brian Ng Fatt
After spending seven years and seven months in prison, Roland
Bobby Doorgadeen, a former policeman, was acquitted
yesterday of the murder of a Canadian couple, after a dramatic
confession by his ex-wife that she had fabricated her evidence.
However, the admission by Nicole Doorgadeen was strongly chastised
by Justice Melville Baird, who called for an investigation
into her allegations that she was threatened and pressured
into giving evidence by the police.
is one of the most bizarre sittings I have ever had,
the statements she gave to the police and evidence at the
first trial, all the evidence was fabricated and came about
because the police pressured her to testify.
government of Canada and the police wanted action.
friend said that this leaves much to be desired and I think
this is an understatement of the year.
cannot end here, we cannot leave the matter there.
Baird said the allegations made were grave and weighty.
He said the matter should be investigated, since the allegations
against the police had to be investigated.
what she said they did is not true, they should be given the
chance to defend themselves, he said.
there be an investigation into this matter. Let us see who
is speaking the truth, he added, before calling on the
jury to return a not-guilty verdict.
Doorgadeen, 38, formerly of Princes Town, was charged with
murdering Canadians Geoffrey Barnes, a 23-year-old part-time
computer programming teacher, and his four-month-pregnant
wife Sherelle Ann, 22, between May 8 and 12, 1994.
Their bodies were found on Delmare beach, Blanchisseuse.
Last year, a retrial was ordered by Justice Herbert Volney
after a jury had failed to reach a unanimous decision.
Attorneys Ravi Rajcoomar, Prakash Ramadhar and Ian Ibrahim
represented Doorgadeen, while Angelica Teelucksingh and Wayne
Rajbansie appeared for the State.
lied because I was threatened
ex-wife of a former police officer yesterday broke down in
tears in the witness box as she admitted she had fabricated
evidence against him because she was threatened by police.
Nicole Doorgadeen was being led into evidence by State attorney
Wayne Rajbansie at the retrial of Roland Bobby
Doorgadeen at Port-of-Spain First Criminal Court.
Bobby Doorgadeen was charged with the murders of Canadians
Geoffrey and Sherelle Ann Barnes, between May 8 and 12, 1994.
Nicole Doorgadeen had on numerous occasions said her husband
had admitted to her he was responsible for the double murders.
However, a teary-eyed Doorgadeen said she had matters pending
in court for fraud, and was told by police they would revoke
her bail if she did not co-operate.
my kids will be in foster care, since I will be prison,
also received a lot of threats and they said I will be shot
and killed and could be jointly charged with the murders.
Doorgadeen said the police also called her mother in Montreal,
Canada, and said she could be charged.
She admitted that the statement she gave to Justice of the
Peace Ralph Khan on April 8,1998, was not true.
police kept coming all the time and said I will be put in
prison and that my life and my kids were in danger, since
it was us alone, Doorgadeen said.
She said the police also offered to get her fraud charges
thrown out of court, if I gave evidence, and I will
also be given money to start over my life.
Doorgadeen also admitted that evidence given in Port-of-Spain
Magistrates Court and the High Court was lies.
She said the statements she gave on April 6 and August 19,
1998, were fabricated because of the threats.
am very sorry, a sobbing Doorgadeen said.
could not take the risk of being in prison and my children
my husband went to prison, my family had deserted me and I
live with my girls alone.
At this point, Rajbansie reminded the jury of his earlier
submissions that the States case was founded on Doorgadeens
evidence and her statements left much to be desired.
it would be public policy and administration of justice for
the State to hold the witness as a reliable one, Rajbansie
State now views the witness as being unreliable, and in these
circumstances, the State cannot proceed any further.
Rajbansie then advised Justice Melville Baird to discharge
One of the attorneys representing the accused, Ravi Rajcoomar,
told the court he was in agreement with Rajbansie legally
is frightening is that in January 2003, this matter went to
the jury and they were very close to a verdict of guilty.
God there is no case to answer.