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Emotional ride ahead

Published: 
Sunday, July 26, 2015
Dana’s family elated, but sees long journey
Rajaee Ali

The family of Dana Seetahal, SC, has commended the Trinidad and Tobago Police Service following the arrests and charges laid against her alleged killers.

During a police briefing yesterday Deputy Commissioner of Police Glenn Hackett announced that 11 men were held and charged in connection with her May 4, 2014, murder.

Speaking on behalf of Seetahal’s family yesterday, her nephew Dave Persad praised the police service for its work on this case, but said the family understood that the real journey had only just begun.

“There is no closure as yet,” Persad said in a telephone interview.

Among the 11 held were brothers Rajaee Ali and Hamid Ali. 

Ali (R) was also linked to the defunct and controversial LifeSporTT programme. The others charged were Ishmael Ali, Gareth Wiseman, Leston Gonzales, Ricardo Stewart, Stefan Cummings, Devon Cummings, Earl Wolfe Richards, Kevin Parkinson and Roget Boucher.

“It took a while to for us to have confidence in the police service, but I can say after what we saw today (yesterday) we have more confidence in the work that they do,” Persad told the Sunday Guardian in a telephone interview.

Hackett, at the start of the media conference, apologised to the entire Seetahal clan for not being able to apprise them of the ongoing investigations to the extent they would have liked.

“We did stay in contact with the police since the investigation began. We were not given a lot of information and we understand why, but people who lose a loved one would also understand why you need answers,” he said.

Persad said he stayed in contact with his aunts (Seetahal’s sisters) and cousins during the short televised news conference and they were in quick communication when the information on the arrests was made public.

“At first we thought it was just another one of the media stories that we would hear the media was wrong, but I was elated when I heard them confirm the arrests,” Persad said.

Persad said the family was now preparing for the long journey ahead as the matter winds through the courts.

“It is not a matter of if it happens, it is always if you’re prepared to deal with it once it does. We have to be mentally and emotionally prepared for what happens next,” he said. 

Persad could not comment on any details of the case as the matter is now sub-judice.

“We believe this is a good start and the family has been patient but we will accept no compromise on this,” he said.

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