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Guyana-born murder accused Marcus Bisram loses extradition challenge in US

Marcus Bisram

A New York Court on Tuesday threw out a challenge by Guyanese- American Marcus Bisram, to his extradition to Guyana to face trial for the murder of a man who had refused his sexual overtures.

United States District Judge, Kia A. Matsumoto upheld  last October’s ruling by Judge Peggy Kuo of the Eastern District Court of New York that there was sufficient evidence  for Bisram to be extradited to Guyana.

On March 7, 2017 a Guyanese court issued an arrest warrant for Bisram on the grounds that he instructed five other men to kill Fiayaz Narinedatt  because he had retaliated when he (Bisram) had held the man’s penis and buttock.

Evidence provided by Guyanese police show that Narinedatt was beaten, thrown in a drain, removed and placed in a car trunk and placed on a road to make it appear as if Narinedatt had been struck down by a vehicle.

Bisram is among five persons charged charged wit the murder of Narinedatt at Number 70 Village, Corentyne between October 31 and November 1, 2016.

In challenging Judge Kuomo’s decision to order that he be extradited, Bisram had said there was no probable cause to justify his extradition since one or three eye witnesses had recanted his story and a court in Guyana was likely to rule in his favour that the murder charge should be dropped because the witnesses lacked credibility and that there was no murder charge against him in Guyana. Even if the court were to believe that Chunilall had recanted his story, the Judge said there was reasonable ground to assume that Bisram was guilty of murder. The question of credibility, Judge Matsuoto said, should be dealt with by the Guyanese courts.

However, Judge Matsumoto said the Guyana government informed the Department of State that the murder charge against Bisram was still pending in a court in Guyana.

“Therefore, petitioner has not satisfied his burden to demonstrate that the charges against him have been dismissed,
and his unsupported claim that they have been dismissed and that probable cause is therefore lacking does not warrant granting habeas relief,” Matsumo  concluded.

Judge Matsumoto found that there were inconsistencies in Bisram’s position on whether there was a valid extradition treaty between Guyana and the US. In court papers seen by Demerara Waves Online News, the Judge found that Bisram was no longer interested in pursuing the question of a treaty. “Because petitioner clearly abandoned his challenge to the existence of a valid treaty at the extradition hearing, the court finds that petitioner has waived his right to raise the issue in his habeas proceedings. Similarly, Magistrate Judge
Kuo did not err by not addressing the issue of the validity of an extradition treaty,” he said.

The Court further found that Bisram sought to raise new issues in some instances and previous issues for which proper evidence had not been presented to Judge Kuomo’s court.