Pirates likely to be charged in Guyana instead of Suriname

Last Updated on Tuesday, 31 May 2016, 15:56 by Denis Chabrol

Five suspected Guyanese pirates, allegedly responsible for the death of four Guyanese fishermen in Suriname, would most likely be charged in Guyana rather than being sent back to that Dutch-speaking country, a senior police officer said Tuesday.

“We are actually seeking other advice and we’re looking at the Piracy Act.  I was told that murder is an international offence and therefore we may be able to lay charges,”  he told Demerara Waves Online News when asked whether the suspects would be sent back to Suriname for charges to be laid since the offence was committed there.

He said a team of investigators travelled to Lower Shell Area, Nickerie, Suriname on Tuesday morning to possibly collect evidence and they were due to return later in the day.

Amsterdam said police were Tuesday due to seek an extension from the High Court to continue the detention of the five suspects who were arrested on Saturday, May 28, 2016 at the Number 65 Village, Corentyne in a boat fitting the description given.

Police said the cutlass-wielding pirates attacked the Guyanese fishermen at about 11 PM on Friday, May 27, 2016, dumping the five fishermen aboard and carting off their outboard motor.  The captain, Seepersaud Persaud, was rescued but one of his fishermen, Hemchand Sukhdeo of Number 55 Village, Corentyne, died and his body was recovered. Feared dead are Dhanpaul Rampaul of No. 67 Village, Corentyne, Dochand “Bucher”, 54, of No. 55 Village, Corentyne; and 26-year old Munesh “Boyo” Churram.

“We are working along with our Surinamese counterparts to see if we can recover bodies,” said the Divisional Commander.

The Divisional Commander said investigators were also working to ascertain whether the detainees were also responsible for a second vessel that was attacked the same night. No one aboard that vessel was injured but the boat’s engine was stolen.