|Frustrated Alexandrov writes to Pres Carmona, PM... |
By Nalinee Seelal Sunday, February 23 2014
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Forensic Pathologist Dr Valery Alexandrov...
Forensic Pathologist attached to the Forensic Sciences Centre in St James, Dr Valery Alexandrov, has written to President Anthony Carmona, Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar, Attorney General Anand Ramlogan, the Medical Board and others to complain about what he describes as “unbearable working conditions” being created by an official of the Centre.
In a letter dated February 17, which was also copied to the Ministers of National Security, Health, National Diversity, Director of Police Complaints Authority, Ag Police Commissioner, and American Citizens Services’ US Embassy, Alexandrov, who has been practising in this country for the past six years, said he had addressed many of his concerns to the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Justice, Melba Dedier and Director of the Centre, Arlette Lewis.
“So far nothing has been done to address this abusive and intolerable situation. I am particularly shocked that everything I’ve described is taking place in the state institution whose function is to assist the law in fighting crime and violence,” he said in his letter.
Alexandrov also said the situation was, in fact, worsening due to the “unprofessional and uncivilised behaviour” of a certain official at the Centre.
In his letter, Alexandrov reminded of prior instances of abuse against him, personally, noting for instance that on December 2 last year he was physically attacked inside the mortuary room at the Centre and he subsequently reported that matter to the St Clair Police.
“On February 12, 2014 without any valid reason, the official deliberately discarded important biological evidence (tissue samples) retained by me after autopsy for further testing. The samples were from a complex case of a sex offender found dead in a prison cell. These kinds of cases (“death in custody”) are always challenging and require very thorough examination and investigation,” Alexandrov charged. He said the samples were recovered in a dustbin. “I consider these actions to be illegal tampering with crucial medico-legal and police investigation evidence.”
In a third incident which he said occurred on February 13, Alexandrov reported he was standing outside the centre by the loading dock in with his wife when the official suddenly started yelling derogatory words at them, repeatedly. Alexandrov noted that he has had no complaints about his work during his tenure at the centre.
“However, under the present circumstances I find it difficult to function normally and concentrate on my job,” he admitted. Contacted for comment on Alexandrov’s claims, Lewis requested that Sunday Newsday put all questions in writing and address it to Communications Specialist Alicia Carter-Fisher at the Ministry of Justice.
Contacted by hone for a response, all queries would first have to go to the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of National Security for a response.