EZjet former CEO arraigned in Florida. – 3rd Jan 2013
The man who decided to take on the Airlines serving Guyana, by bringing in an airline of his own, EZJet, Sonny Ramdeo, is now telling the US Federal court that he is indigent! Ramdeo was transferred from custody in New York where he was arrested last year for fraud and was arraigned yesterday in the West Palm Beach Federal court in Florida. Ramdeo is accused of fraudulently using funds from a Florida Health Care provider, Promise Health Care, to finance his EZ jet Guyana operations.
When he appeared in court, Ramdeo also waived the formal reading of the complaint against him and entered a not guilty plea to the charges. The US Magistrate, Judge Dave Lee Brannon, ordered that each side the prosecution and defence should make available to each other, whatever evidence has come in the case so far. He also told the court that the Pre-trial Detention hearing would be held on January 9th while the next status conference will be on February 4th.
Ramdeo while running the upstart airline EZjet was repeatedly questioned by the Guyana based press about the source of his financing. He contended that he had unnamed investors and used money from his personal investments and retirement funds. The local authorities appear to accept his explanation and just allowed him to lodge a bond with the Guyana Government. When the US Department of Transportation shut down his operation, the Guyana Government followed suit and closed down the airline here leaving several passengers stranded.
Ezjet, running the New York route initially then later the Toronto and Trinidad routes with lower fares and generous baggage allowances, lasted for just about a year.