Deputy Premier Accused of Assisting Murder Suspect

Port Louis- Mauritius (PANA) -- Mauritian Deputy Prime Minister Paul Berenger faces a charge of aiding and abetting a murder suspect to escape arrest.
According to details tendered in court Thursday through a private prosecution process, Berenger gave 240,000 rupees to Toorab Bissessur to help him run away to Madagascar after committing crimes in Mauritius (29.
40 rupees=1USD).
Swaleha Joomun, a widow, is suing the deputy premier for facilitating the escape of Bissessur who was wanted in connection with a triple murder which occurred 26 October 1996 in Port Louis.
The husband of Joomun was a victim of the murder.
The widow claims that Berenger paid for Bissessur's air ticket to Madagascar to facilitate his removal from the Mauritian territory, the jurisdiction of Mauritian authorities and the administration of justice.
According to a motion introduced in the court in Curepipe, 20 km south of Port Louis, Berenger "had wilfully, knowingly and criminally caused to have harboured a criminal whom he knew to have committed a crime to wit.
" Joomun said Berenger knew that Bissessur had committed several crimes and misdemeanours in Mauritius against public peace between 1995 and 1997.
The suspect is presently detained by Mauritian police.
The case was postponed to 27 June.

07 june 2001 21:35:00

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