A Jamaican man accused of selling a fishing boat and engine that did not belong to him has been granted $40,000 bail at the Magistrate’s Court.
Charged with theft is fisherman and construction worker, Chevon Russell.
He was not required to plead when he appeared before Magistrate Ayanna Baptiste-DaBreo last week because his matter is indictable. This effectively means it is triable before a judge and jury in the High Court.
Prosecutors allege that between December 2017 and January 2018, the accused made a verbal arrangement with another fisherman on Virgin Gorda who is said to be the rightful owner of the boat and engine in question.
The court heard that the arrangement was that Russell would utilise the vessel to fish and in turn, he (Russell) would do odd jobs for the complainant.
The court heard that after making the arrangement, the complainant no longer saw the vessel. It is alleged that when he questioned the accused, he (Russell) replied that something went wrong on the boat and it was undergoing repairs in Tortola.
When further questioned as to the reason it was being repaired on Tortola and not on Virgin Gorda, the accused allegedly said it was cheaper for him that way, the court heard.
After inquiring time after time on the status of his vessel, the complainant reported the matter to the police who then launched an investigation.
The boat was eventually found on Tortola in another person’s backyard. That person claimed they had purchased it from the accused. The vessel and the engine were subsequently seized.
Russell, who is unrepresented, denied the claim and is scheduled to return to court on March 7.