by Zena Henry
Five men said to be part of a “crime gang” that had an armed confrontation with members of the police force’s SWAT team were remanded to jail on separate charges of murder, robbery and discharging a loaded firearm Monday July 20.
Appearing before Georgetown Magistrate, Ann McLennan Fazeel Bacchus and Lennox Roberts were arraigned on a charge of the murder of Ganesh Ramlall called ‘Boyo’ at his La Jalousie home, West Coast Demerara home during the course of a robbery on July 5,
The men were not required to plea to the indictable charge. Attorney-at-Law Melvin Duke represented Roberts who he said hails from Tuschen Housing Scheme on the East Bank of Essequibo. Roberts is 32 years old and is the father of three children with another on the way. Duke requested that the court order his client to seek immediate medical attention after claiming that he was tortured by the police and was urinating blood.
Bacchus, 21, who also resides at East Bank Essequibo, was unrepresented. Both men said they were taxi drivers. Their matter was transferred to the Leonora Magistrate’s Court for August 3.
Damien Melvington, 17, of Caesar Street Agricola, Nicholas Narine, 20 also of Caesar Street and Anthony David, 28 were slapped with the offence of armed robbery. It was stated that on July 9, at Montrose, East Coast of Demerara, while in the company of others they robbed, Land Court Judge, Nicole Pierre and husband Mohamed Chand. It was stated that they took from Chand brand-name sunglasses, brand-name wristwatches, US$8,000, among other items which totaled almost GUY$2.7M.
From Pierre, it was stated that the accused stole video games, gold and diamond jewelry, gems, cell phones and other items that totalling GUY$1m. Another charge said that on the same day, the accused while with others, discharged a round at security personnel, Ron Peters, with the intent to maim, hurt, injure or disfigure him.
It was reported that Pierre and her husband were so badly beaten that they were admitted to the Intensive Care Unit of a City hospital. It was further reported tha,t among other injuries, Chand lost and eye while Pierre suffered a broken jaw. The court heard that victims are currently overseas receiving, medical attention.
None of the three accused had lawyers, but David claimed that not only was he badly beaten by the police, but he was picked up for questioning and then brought to court. He said he was told that he was going home Monday, July 20 but was subsequently brought to court. He claimed that named ranks shocked and beat him on his genitals, while no statement was ever taken from him. Narine said that he was also beaten and shocked.
The police prosecutor told the court that the police facts are completely different from what the men were saying since the victims in the matter positively identified the accused. The prosecutor explained that the men were not picked up under normal circumstances, but during an armed confrontation with police ranks which saw the suspected gang leader being killed and another injured and currently receiving medical attention at the Georgetown Public Hospital. Ballistics tests also implicated the accused based on the handgun they used.
Demerara Waves understands that the police detectives are also looking for other suspects. It was said that one person had put the whole matter together to enable the police to build their case. The three men will return to court on July 30, to hear that matter at the Sparendaam Magistrate’s Court.