Monday 14th August, 2006

 

Ramlogan: A PR job at damage control

 
 
 
 
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BY RESHMA RAGOONATH

Attorneys representing the grieving family of slain fisherman Shazad Mohammed are condemning the findings of the preliminary investigation conducted by the Coast Guard.

The probe has cleared officers involved in the shooting of any wrongdoing, stating there was “no premeditated or deliberate intention” to harm Mohammed.

But lead attorney for the Mohammed family, Anand Ramlogan, in a release yesterday, described the findings “as biased and one-sided.”

Ramlogan has been retained by the Mohammed family, along with attorneys Kevin Ratiram and Imran Khan, of Freedom House Law Chambers, to look after the family’s legal interests.

The attorney said the investigation was “a mere public relations job, designed to do damage control and salvage the poor image of the nation’s protective services,” in wake of the torture and brutalisation of Rabindra Choon, allegedly by police, and the death of young Mohammed.

Ramlogan has described the investigation into Mohammed’s killing as “a farce” that is “clearly designed to exonerate the Coast Guard, instead of confronting the clear excessive use of force on three young, unarmed fishermen who were simply trying to earn an honest living by fishing.”

The inquiry, he claimed in the release, lacked integrity and transparency, and must be viewed with deep suspicion.

Ramlogan is asking for a copy of the report, so that he can advise his clients on whether it should be challenged in the High Court on the grounds of bias and unfairness.

He added that Coast Guard personnel had visited the attorneys, requesting copies of the statements taken by the police from the two young fishermen who survived the incident.

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