(CNS): The former president of the UCCI asked the ICT manager to erase everything on the laptop he used and to delete all the files from his computer. In evidence read to the jury Thursday, and unchallenged by the defence, Greg Fielder told police that he was asked by Hassan Syed to clear his laptop and files but to back it up on discs. The president told the college IT manager that while he was away getting medical treatment, someone else would be stepping in and be using the laptop, but shortly afterwards he contacted Fielder again and asked him to completely delete everything and destroy the files and back-ups.
As Syed’s trial on theft charges continued, the crown read a number of statements to the jury from witnesses that are not disputed by the defence. One of those was Fielder.
In the statement, he said that although he had cleared the laptop because there was a “bunch of crap on it” and it needed a clean-up, he did not erase the files, which were on the UCCI server. He added, “I didn’t like what he was asking.” Fielder believed that it wasn’t, as Syed claimed, his property to destroy but that it belonged to the university and it was up to the acting president to decide what should happen to the files.
As a result, when the police inquiry began into the financial irregularities at the college, he handed over all of the information he still had from Syed’s computer. Fielder told the police he was more than 99% certain he had saved all of Syed’s files.
The jury also heard a statement from Raymond Jones, another of Syed’s former colleagues at the UCCI. Jones, who was the electronics teacher, said he had been very friendly with when Syed was still a lecturer and had even shared his family home with him in the wake of Hurricane Ivan. But he described how a kind, humble and intelligent man for whom he had been full of admiration had changed when he took on the job of president.
He described trips overseas on college business with Syed, where it became apparent the president’s tastes had become lavish and he would always take a suite rather than a hotel room.
The case continues.