Dr. George Proctor, the senior botanist at the University of the West Indies who allegedly plotted to have his chauffeur kill his wife, was denied bail and ordered fingerprinted when he appeared in the Half-Way-Tree Criminal Court Monday, reports the Jamaica Observer
Proctor’s former employee, Glenmore Fellington who is charged alongside Proctor, was also denied bail and ordered fingerprinted.
Both men, who have been charged with one count of conspiracy to murder and one count of incitement to murder, are scheduled to return to court on 3 May.
Attorney-at-law Dennis Morrison QC, who is representing Proctor in the matter, made a lengthy bail application on behalf of his client, in which he emphasised Proctor’s age and ill health.
Proctor, Morrison claimed, is diabetic and suffers from an acute case of glaucoma. ‘His (Proctor) age and his physical condition, I would submit, he is hardly a flight risk,’ Morrison told the court.
Morrison, at the same time, dismissed the fact that Proctor’s arrest by the police at the Norman Manley International Airport suggested that he was a flight risk. ‘There is no significance in his being arrested at the airport, and it cannot be suggested (because of this) that he is fleeing from justice,’ he added.
Morrison also told the court that although Proctor was an American citizen, he had much at stake in Jamaica, having lived and maintained a permanent residence in the island since 1949.
However, after hearing a detailed account of the allegations against both Proctor and Fellington, presiding magistrate Judith Pusey refused bail to the accused.
‘The allegations do not suggest that he is limited by his age in any way,’ said the magistrate.
Pusey also refused to grant bail on the grounds that the nature of the allegations prevented her from granting either of the men bail separately. Fellington’s lawyer was absent from Monday’s proceedings.
According to court documents, on February 6 of this year, Fellington, while in Mandeville, is alleged to have approached a man referred to as ‘Simpson’ for assistance in killing Proctor’s wife, saying that both of them were the best persons to do the job. The murder was to happen between April 20 and 27, when Proctor would have been off the island.
Some time afterwards Fellington, ‘Simpson’ and Proctor, the court documents said, met at the UWI campus and agreed on a price of $80,000 for the deed. Days afterwards, however, ‘Simpson’ gave a statement to the police outlining the plot.
On April 19, during another visit to Kingston to further discuss the plot with Proctor and Fellington, ‘Simpson’ is alleged to have taped a conversation in which Proctor, the documents said, stated that he wanted four persons, including his wife, killed.
On April 20, Fellington was intercepted and arrested along Washington Boulevard, while travelling in a taxi. Some time later that day Proctor was intercepted at the Norman Manley International Airport, attempting to board a flight to the United States. Later that day, also, ‘Simpson’ is alleged to have handed over to the police the covert tape he made of the conversation with Proctor and Fellington. He also gave another statement to the police.