Former Free National Movement (FNM) Cabinet minister Lanisha Rolle on Wednesday became the second member of the former administration accused of using her office for personal gain.
Rolle, 46, was charged along with her husband, Vontenken Rolle, Alfred Mortimer, Godfrey Burrows and Wilfred Rolle Jr. during an appearance before Senior Magistrate Carolyn Vogt-Evans.
Mrs. Rolle, who resigned as minster of youth, sports and culture months before the FNM was kicked out of office in 2021, faced charges of bribery and conspiracy to commit fraud by false pretenses in relation to contracts valued at over $700,000.
Prosecutors allege that from 2019 to 2021, the then-Cabinet minister conspired to commit fraud regarding the award of contracts for work done at the National Tennis Centre and Baseball Stadium, South Beach Pools, Grand Bahama Sporting Complex and Kendal G.L. Isaacs Gymnasium.
Prosecutors allege that Mrs. Rolle accepted a $48,303.74 bribe in relation to the award of a contract to G and C Landscaping for work done at the Grand Bahama Sporting Complex while conspiring with others to commit fraud.
She’s also accused of conspiring to commit fraud in relation to a $9,500 contract awarded to Ayveon General Maintenance for work at the Grand Bahama Sporting Complex.
The former minister is accused of conspiracy to commit fraud in relation to 10 contracts with a combined value of $288,985.82 for work at the South Beach Pools.
She’s further charged with conspiracy to commit fraud in relation to a $228,000 contract awarded to Restoration Landscaping and Maintenance and Landscaping for work at the National Tennis Center and Baseball Stadium.
Rolle and her husband are accused of conspiracy to commit fraud in respect of a $168,000 contract for Kendal G.L. Isaacs Gymnasium.
Mortimer also faced a bribery charge. He is accused of offering an advantage as an inducement for the award of a contract to G and C Landscaping for work at the National Sporting Complex.
Burrows and Rolle are accused of conspiracy to commit fraud by false pretenses in connection with a contract, valued at $34,690, awarded to Miller’s Masonry, Carpentry and Maintenance for work at the South Beach Pools.
Burrows is accused of fraudulently obtaining $34,690 for the same contract.
The defendants didn’t have to enter pleas to the charges because the prosecution intends to fast-track the case to the Supreme Court with the presentation of a voluntary bill of indictment in May.
Vogt-Evans granted Mrs. Rolle $120,000 bail and her husband’s bail was set at $50,000.
The other defendants were each granted $10,000 bail.
Acting Director of Public Prosecutions Cordell Frazier appeared for the prosecution.
Krysta Mason-Smith represented Mrs. Rolle and her husband.
Elsworth Johnson appeared for Mortimer and Kendal Wright acted as a friend of the court for Burrows.
Wilfred Rolle Jr. said his lawyer was not available for the hearing.
Last June, Long Island member of Parliament Adrian Gibson appeared in court on charges of abuse of power while he served as executive chairman of the Water and Sewerage Corporation under the Minnis administration.
They are awaiting trial.