Marlene McDonald and her husband Michael Carew on their way to court on Monday. Photo: ROBERT TAYLOR

MEMBER of Parliament for Port of Spain South Marlene McDonald didn’t need a wheelchair today when she made her first appearance in the Port of Spain Magistrates’ Court, charged with multiple criminal offences.

McDonald, who is free on $2 million bail, appeared with co-accused common-law husband Michael Carew, former chairman of the National Self-Help Commission Edgar Zephyrine and contractors Wayne Anthony and Victor McEachrane.

The men granted bail in the sums of $.5 million, $1 million, $400,000 and $100,000, respectively.

All five were charged last month but McDonald never officially appeared in court, because she fell ill while in police custody and was taken to St Clair Medical Centre for treatment for a still-undisclosed medical condition.

In all, the five face 49 charges.

McDonald faces charges of conspiracy to defraud, money laundering and misbehaviour in public office.

The charges were read to McDonald today by Chief Magistrate Maria Busby Earl-Caddle.

McDonald was not called upon to enter a plea since the charges are laid indictably.

Attorney with the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions George Busby appeared for the State.

He was asked by the magistrate about the number of witness that the State would be relying on during the preliminary enquiry.

Busby said that approximately 22 would be testifying.

The Court was told that it would take a minimum of three months for all the documents to be filed in the case.

The cases were adjourned to November 4.