Man implicated in cocaine-laced tonic deaths on narco-trafficking charge

Last Updated on Wednesday, 23 July 2014, 18:18 by GxMedia

Deon “Barney” Layne

The man allegedly linked to the death of four persons who drank cocaine-laced SSS Tonic was Wednesday arraigned on a cocaine-trafficking charge.

He is 34-year old Deon “Barney” Layne of HH East La Penitence. Layne pleaded not guilty to being in possession of 252 grammes of cocaine on May 2 at Kokerite Street, Georgetown.

Chief Magistrate, Priya Sewnarine-Beharry refused Layne bail and remanded him to prison until August 4.

The prosecution’s facts are that on the day in question he went to the home of Candacy Mc Garrell’s niece who was visiting from the United States. He asked Mc Garrell to take back some SSS Tonic to his brother in the US but she did not do so.

Four of five persons, who drank the substance from the bottle, died at the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation (GPHC). Autopsies confirmed that they died from cocaine poisoning.

Those who perished were Simone Pryce,36, her reputed husband Alex Blair,42, and their nine year old deaf son, Jahkil Blair, as well as 36-year old Natasha George.  Pryce and George were best friends. George’s son, 12-year old Jamal Waterman, was the lone survivor.