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Victims’ families lost confidence in Police investigation – attorney

first_imgLindo Creek CoIAttorney Nigel Hughes told the Commission of Inquiry (CoI) into the 2008 Lindo Creek massacre that the victims’ families lost all confidence in the Police Force’s investigative capabilities after independent forensic services were denied.The CoI heard that following news of the Lindo Creek massacre, the mining camp’s owner, Leonard Arokium, retained the services of Attorney Nigel Hughes to ensure that a proper investigation was done since the families of the victims wereAttorney Nigel Hughes testify before the CoI on Wednesdaysuspicious of the Joint Services’ involvement in the incident.When Hughes took the stand before the Commission of Inquiry, he related at the time he wrote to then Police Commissioner Henry Greene indicating that they retained the services of United Kingdom’s Forensic Science Service to aid the Police in their investigation of the incident. Then Chief-of-Staff, Rear Admiral Gary Best, was also copied in the correspondence.However, Greene acknowledged receipt of the letter but never took up the offer. Instead, they relied on the United States for help, which never materialised and then settled for assistance from Jamaica and Trinidad to identify the remains of the eight men.“There was a very testy exchange between myself and Commissioner Greene in which I indicated to the Commissioner that we had virtually lost confidence in the ability of the Guyana Police Force to conduct a fair investigation or an investigation with any credit at all and we expressed those sentiments in a letter,” Hughes testified.“I indicated to him that since the end of June or July had offered these services and now it appears that he had deliberately delayed the investigation and we expressed the sentiments and he responded, in I would say, the similar tone,” he added.Hughes recounted that in August of 2008 they received information that the cellular phone of victim, Dax Arokium, was still being used. He said they then got a print out of the calls made using the number and furnished it to the Police resulting in Greene denying any knowledge of the phone number and subsequently accused Arokium of withholding information.However, Hughes testified that they then wrote to Greene informing him that the number was provided when then Prime Minister Samuel Hinds along with the Home Affairs Minister and other official visited Leonard’s home on the West Coast of Demerara.Additionally, the CoI heard that Yonette Torres, mother of victim, Nigel Torres last saw Dax alive on June 5 when he was heading into Lindo Creek. According to Hughes, she reportedly sent a message to her son informing him to be careful because of the heavy Police presence in the Backdam.Varswyck’s roleHughes posited that ex-Policeman Urie Varswyck, who had escaped from the Georgetown Prison and was killed in 2017, was part of a Joint Services team that went into Lindo Creek when the Police Force had been in search of the “Fine Man” gang.“I do have information that I received in a professional capacity, that I cannot disclose, that actually indicated the identity of some of the members of the team, one of them is now deceased, Mr Varswyck was part of the Police Force,” Hughes said.He added that Varswyck was under the command of a serving member of the Guyana Police Force. When asked by the Commission’s Chairman, Justice Donald Trotman to reveal the name of that serving officer, Hughes declined citing fear of the officer’s life.During the last CoI hearing, retired Assistant Commissioner Heeralall Mackanlall, who was at the time of the tragedy the Deputy Head of the Office of Professional Responsibility (OPR), said he investigated the massacre upon request from Greene and was unable to find evidence implicating the Joint Services in the killings. At the same time, it was determined that a Police, Army and Special Forces team were in the general Lindo Creek area.Sometime between June 12, 2008 and June 24, 2008, miners Cecil Arokium, Dax Arokium, Compton Speirs, Horace Drakes, Clifton Wong, Lancelot Lee, Bonny Harry and Nigel Torres were shot and killed, and their bodies burnt at the Upper Berbice River mining camp.last_img read more

HORSE RACING RETURNS TO FALCARRAGH AFTER 14 YEAR ABSENCE

first_imgHorse racing has returned to a Co Donegal town and hopefully it won’t be a wash-out! After a 14 year break, horse racing makes a welcome return to Falcarragh this Bank Holiday Monday when Falcarragh beach hosts an eight race card.The first race goes off at 12 noon and with the good weather expected to last over the coming days, a bumper crowd is expected at the Gaeltacht venue. Because of the tide restrictions, patrons are asked to be at the venue as early as possible to avoid any delays. HORSE RACING RETURNS TO FALCARRAGH AFTER 14 YEAR ABSENCE was last modified: May 29th, 2012 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:Falcarraghhorse racinglast_img read more