By Latrishka Thomas
The trial against former general manager of the Antigua and Barbuda Transport Board (ABTB) Harry Josiah has finally begun.
It is a judge-only trial before Justice Stanley John, with attorney Andrew O’Kola as the lead prosecutor assisted by Cedric Dyer.
The first witness called to the stand was the investigator in the matter, retired Senior Sergeant of police Marlon Proctor, who, for hours, gave the court an account of all the evidence he gathered.
In September 2014, an investigation was launched into the management of the ABTB under Josiah’s tenure.
He was later sent home on indefinite suspension which was subsequently rescinded, and he returned to work in January 2015.
The police are said to have launched a further probe in March 2015 after the government reportedly complained of misbehaviour among high-ranking ABTB officials.
The probe reportedly resulted in the seizure of a number of vehicles, furniture, documents and other material from Josiah’s home.
Josiah was first charged in mid-March 2015 with three counts of corruption; three counts of larceny; six counts of forgery; six counts of uttering; and three counts of obtaining vehicles by virtue of false documents – offences that were allegedly committed over the period of December 2009 to December 2010.
Later that same month, additional charges were filed against him.
The former Transport Board boss is now facing eight counts of corruption and three for fraud.
Allegations are that Josiah performed his duties for the purpose of obtaining company vehicles and causing the same cars to be transferred to other people by virtue of a forged document.
A woman, Genevieve Phillip, who is alleged to have fraudulently acquired one of the cars, is said to have aided the corruption and is also on trial alongside Josiah.
The trial will continue this morning.