DPP takes over private criminal charges against Lowenfield, Mingo

Last Updated on Friday, 21 August 2020, 18:04 by Denis Chabrol

Chief Election Officer of the Guyana Elections Commission, Keith Lowenfield.

After a “comprehensive investigation” by police, the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) has taken over private criminal charges against Chief Elections Officer Keith Lowenfield and Region Four Returning Officer Clairmont Mingo, police said Friday.

Clairmont Mingo

Based on complaints by Desmond Morean and Josh Kanhai,  Mr. Lowenfield and Mr. Mingo are charged with conspiracy to commit a felony and fraud.

Mr. Lowenfield is also charged with misconduct in public office.

The Guyana Poluce Force said that 21st August, 2020, formal reports were received which alleged criminal conduct by Mr. Lowenfield, Mr. Clairmont Mingo and others in relation to the March, 2nd, 2020, General and Regional Elections and events subsequent thereto.

Police said after advice was obtained from the DPP  to launch a comprehensive investigation into these allegations in accordance with its mandate, the DPP Shalimar Hack said she would take over the private criminal charges.

The Private Prosecutor Attorney-at-Law Glenn Hanoman had said at the arraignment of Mr. Lowenfield that the DPP might take over the cases and prosecute them to their fullest extent.

Attorneys-at-Law Nigel Hughes had written to the DPP to withdraw the charges in like manner to what she had done to those against the Chairman of the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM).

People’s National Congress Reform Chairman Volda Lawrence and Mr. Mingo are due to be arraigned on Monday.

At the centre of his request was that the Hanoman-led team of lawyers had filed the charges without sufficient evidence.

The Chief Elections Officer had issued a number of different results for the Match 2 general elections including one that the Caribbean Court of Justice had ordered be withdrawn. The GECOM Chairman had also set aside all of the 10 district declarations including the questionable one for Region Four.

The final national recount was constantly at variance with all of the other results.

The then incumbent APNU+AFC and the Chief Elections Officer’s positionon electoral fraud and other irregularities were almost identical.

The Guyana Court of Appeal eventually upheld a High Court ruling that the figures from the national recount must be used to declare the final results of the polls. That was done and the People’s Progressive Party was declared the winner on August 2, 2020.