A man accused of importing 850 pounds of conch without a valid permit last year pleaded not guilty in Summary Court Tuesday.
The defendant, Carl Harshall Ebanks, was represented by attorney Michael Alberga. Mr. Alberga told Magistrate Valdis Foldats that he could make his legal submissions in five or 10 minutes and the whole trial did not need to take more than half an hour.
The magistrate asked if he and Crown counsel Kenneth Ferguson agreed on the facts of the case. They both indicated yes.
“So, the issue is whether the law applies to the facts?” the magistrate asked.
“Yes,” Mr. Alberga replied.
Mr. Ebanks is accused of bringing the conch, referred to in the charge as “a specimen,” into George Town harbor on Oct. 17, 2017. The charge was laid under the Endangered Species (Trade and Transport) Law, 2017. The law provides for a penalty of up to $500,000 and four years imprisonment. It also allows for the vessel concerned to be seized.
Mr. Alberga advised that the boat on which Mr. Ebanks had brought the conch had not been seized, so there was no urgency in setting a trial date. The magistrate set trial for Thursday, June 7.