One week after four men from the village of Woburn in St George’s appeared before the St Georges #1 Magistrate Court, on drug trafficking and conspiracy charges, linked to a one million dollar drug dust on Hog Island, a fifth man from the same village has been charged.
Ralph Blackman, no stranger to the court, last Friday became the fifth man arrested in connection with the Hog Island discovery, he made his first court appearance before Magistrate Taheria Gellineau at the St Georges # 2 Magistrate Court.
According to information reaching the Grenada Informer, Blackman who it was said had been on the police radar for some time, was arrested at his home in Woburn last Friday on charges of trafficking and conspiracy for his alleged connection with the July 24th Hog Island drug bust.
This newspaper learned that the lawmen also have strong reasons to believe that the boat seized in the Hog Island drug bust also belong to Blackman.
Meanwhile, during his brief stint in court on Monday, represented by defence counsel Anselm Clouden and Queens Counsel Dr Francis Alexis, Blackman had no difficulty securing bail and the prosecution raised no objection to bail. Instead, they requested that conditions be put in place to ensure Blackman shows up for his trial.
Bail was therefore set at $200,000.00 with two sureties; Blackman is required to report to the South St George Police Station every Monday and Friday between the hours of 6 am and 6 pm. He is to surrender all his travel documents and must seek the court’s permission in the event that he needs to travel out of the country.
The alleged quantity of drugs involved in this case is 11.265 kilos of cocaine at an estimated value of EC$ 1, 126. 500.00.
The prosecution also hinted to the court that like the other four accused Craig Messiah, Clinton Braithwaite, Abijah Davis and Kimei Richardson all charges brought against Blackman would be indictable, it, therefore, means that once sufficient evidence is had from the preliminary inquiry the matter would be sent to be tried before a judge and jury.
Meanwhile, if convicted on both charges Blackman faces prison term in excess of twenty years or a fine three times the value of the drugs in the case.
Blackman is expected to make his next court appearance on September 27th. This time he would in the company of the other men charged with the Hog Island drug bust.