The file was sent in response to a request made by the Central Authority - the State body charged with mutual legal affairs - acting on a request from the Trinidad and Tobago Police Service.
In May 2013, Rowley alleged a conspiracy to murder a journalist among other things, during a motion of no-confidence against the Government. He produced what were purported to be email exchanges between a range of Government officials in relation to the circumstances surrounding the early proclamation of a law that barred prosecution to persons on charges more than ten years old - a move which potentially could have freed two reported UNC financiers on white-collar crime charges.
Immediately after Rowley made his allegations, Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar referred the matter to the police for investigation.
The case was assigned to Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) Mervyn Richardson but upon Richardson’s proceeding on retirement leave was then assigned to ACP Glenn Hackett in late 2013.
Sunday Newsday understands Hackett made a request for the Central Authority to seek assistance from the US Department of Justice, calling for any relevant information and to conduct checks to test the claims made.
The investigator is said to have called for any emails for the period August 31, 2012, to September 30, 2012, relating to the purported email accounts. The search involved addresses called out in Parliament, including: firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com.
It is understood that the Office of International Affairs of the Criminal Division of the US Department of Justice responded to the request. That response came by way of letter dated January 29, 2015, sent to the head of the Central Authority, Netram Kowlessar.
The US Department of Justice has reportedly disclosed a computer disk as well as a certificate of authenticity, dated January 21, 2015, signed by Google’s custodian of records.
It is understood that thousands of emails and attachments in relation to the Prime Minister’s email account of firstname.lastname@example.org were disclosed.
It is further understood that the US Department of Justice confirmed there was no responsive information in relation to the email address: email@example.com found, but materials in relation to the addresses of former National Security Minister Gary Griffith and Minister of Works and Infrastructure Suruj Rambachan were still outstanding.
The US Department of Justice response is said to have come from an official acting on behalf of Mary D Rodriguez, Acting Director of the Office of International Affairs, based at Washington.
Contacted this month over the report of a request for assistance, the lead investigator in the case, Hackett, would not confirm or deny that a request had been made or state whether materials were received. But he said he was due to speak on the matter.
“I shall make a statement on that matter shortly,” Hackett said.
A defamation lawsuit in relation to the email allegations is pending in the court.
Questions have been asked over the pace of the police investigation which has, in recent times, been overshadowed by controversy surrounding a series of defamation lawsuits brought against Rowley in relation to some of his statements.
In January, controversy erupted after former Attorney General Anand Ramlogan was awarded a judgment in default in relation to a lawsuit brought against Rowley over statements Rowley made on the purported emails. It emerged that an administrative official of the Judiciary had failed to notify Rowley’s attorneys of a new deadline for his filing of a defence in the matter.
In 2013, Ramlogan filed a complaint in the California Supreme Court and was given leave to serve a subpoena on Google Incorporated for the production of records including “documents confirming the existence and owners of seven Google-operated email accounts whose addresses appear on the transcripts of emails.” In August 2014, Ramlogan said at a press conference that he had received confirmation from Google that none of the purported emails was real.