By PAVEL BAILEY
Tribune Court Reporter
A member of the national women’s basketball team appeared in court yesterday accused of trying to use a fake police record to travel through Lynden Pindling International Airport.
Leashja Grant, 27, and Antonio Percentie, 27, both faced Acting Chief Magistrate Subusola Swain on fraud charges. Grant was charged with conspiracy to commit fraud by false pretences, possession of a forged document and uttering a forged document. Percentie was charged with abetment to possession of a forged document.
Sometime between July 27 to August 4 in New Providence the two allegedly conspired to commit fraud as Percentie forged an RBPF Police Record numbered 108582 for Grant dated 27/07/22. Then on August 4 Grant used the fake police record as she attempted to travel through LPIA.
Both accused pleaded guilty to all charges against them. The prosecution revealed that Grant had prior convictions for disorderly behaviour and resisting arrest.
Lawyer Attorney Ferguson, representing Grant, said her client had accepted responsibility for her actions at the earliest opportunity. It was also pointed out that she was a single mother after the murder of her fiancé. In addition to being a member of the female national basketball team, she is both employed and studying for an online master’s degree.
In view of these facts Mr Ferguson begged for the court’s mercy in the matter and implored that a custodial sentence not be imposed, suggesting a fine or probation as alternative punishment.
Similarly, Percentie’s lawyer Rhrodreka Strachan, after pointing out that her client cooperated with police investigations and did not waste the court’s time or resources by pleading guilty early, asked the court to exercise justice and mercy on him.
Lawyer Strachan said that a non-custodial sentence or fine would be a fitting punishment.
As the prosecution did not object to fines, Magistrate Swain imposed a combined $3,000 fine on Grant for all three charges. Should Grant fail to pay the $1,000 fines for the second and third charge she would face a one year sentence at the Bahamas Department of Correctional Services (BDCS) for both to be served concurrently.
Percentie was fined $2,000 for his offence or risk a similar one year in custody at BDCS.
The convictions of both accused will be recorded. They were both told of their right to appeal the court’s sentence within seven days.