The “daughter-in-law” of billionaire Tory-Grande Lord Ashcroft, who is accused of shooting a top police officer in Belize, has been released on bail.
Jasmine Hartin, 32, was released yesterday after being held in the Central American country’s top prison for 12 days over the death of Superintendent Henry Jemmott.
Supreme Court Justice Herbert Lord granted the 32-year-old bailiff for £ 10,500 after ruling against prosecutors who argued she posed an escape risk.
As part of the set conditions, Hartin is required to provide all travel documents, report at any postponed appointment and not to leave Belize.
The decision to give bail met with disbelief from many locals.
Miranda Marko said, “Just what we all expected,” while Seni Boiton added: We all knew this would be the result. To expect anything else is simply unrealistic given the situation. Belize, the playground of the rich. “
Hartin is accused of manslaughter of the policeman after he apparently accidentally shot him in the head with his Glock pistol service revolver during a drinking bout.
The Canadian, described as his “wife” by Lord Ashcroft’s youngest Andrew, has described death as a “living nightmare”.
She reportedly told the police in a statement, “I picked up the gun and tried to eject the magazine clip, but it got stuck.
“I was struggling with it, trying to get the magazine out, when the gun suddenly went off.
“I had no idea that there was another bullet in the chamber.”
Hartin, who has two children with Ashcroft, 43, reportedly added, “Henry fell back on me. I was pinned down and he was bleeding all over me.
“When I wriggled to get out from under him to free myself so I could see if he was okay, he slipped into the water.”
Hartin is said to have told the detectives Jemmott (42) that they gave her the gun to practice her shooting skills.
The two were sitting on a secluded pier by the ocean after having had a drink earlier when the incident occurred last month.
Hartin has been charged with negligent homicide and faces up to five years in prison and / or a £ 7,000 fine.
The couple had reportedly been friends for several years, and Jemmott allegedly suggested arming themselves at a party following an incident when a man became aggressive towards her.
“He told me I need a gun for my personal protection,” she is said to have told the police.
The officer reportedly gave her the gun from his holster while they were together in a car and he was driving.
On the night of filming, Hartin, who moved to Belize in 2015, met Jemmott, and the couple reportedly drank wine and whiskey on the pier at Banana Beach Resort, where they chatted and listened to music.
After Jemmott was shot, Hartin from Calgary, Alberta yelled for help and alerted nearby security, who were rushing to the scene to find her up and down the pier.
One person picked up the gun while a shocked Jasmine sat on the rocks before her blood was wiped off her arm.
Jemmott’s family has denied that the two were romantically involved.
Andrew Ashcroft has referred to Hartin as his “wife,” but according to a spokesman for his billionaire’s family, they are not married.