– allegedly recruited gang to torch government buildings, city businesses
A top police official said yesterday that the burning of the Ministry of Health head office was the beginning of a plot by a political group to create public terror by torching several government buildings and businesses in the city.
But the investigators said that the plot unraveled with the arrest over the past two weeks of some of the key players in the organisation.
Those that police allege are the masterminds have repeatedly denied any involvement in the torching of the Health Ministry, and claim their arrests are politically motivated.
According to the official, some of the suspects have provided information about the group’s plans and the persons who financed and provided transportation.
The source said that the statements indicated that the plot was hatched about three months ago. The leaders recruited 12 men, including a suspect in the Lusignan massacre, to commit acts of arson and robbery.
A bodyguard of one of the key players allegedly assisted in recruiting persons for this activity.
A relative of the same leader was allegedly one of those recruited.
The statements, particularly those provided by the suspect in the massacre—who has since escaped— indicated that the group had planed to recruit Guyanese who resided in Barbados.
Apart from the Health Ministry, those interrogated identified the Ministry of Home Affairs as one of the buildings that was to be targeted.
The official said that according to the statements, several buildings in Water Street were also identified to be torched.
The statements alleged that one of the financiers actually bought the ‘channa’ (chick peas) used to make crude incendiary devices.
The source said that four men armed with Molotov cocktails (channa bombs) were taken by vehicle to the Ministry of Health building in Brickdam.
The arsonists allegedly fled in the same vehicle after the deed was done. They were allegedly paid $300,000 each to commit the act.
Police allege that one of the arrested men provided them with the licence number and description of the vehicle that was allegedly used to transport them.
Providence Station escape
But a police source conceded that the escape of suspects Kurt Thierens called ‘Bage’ or ‘Glasses’ and Colin Jones, called ‘Bonny’, from the
Providence Police Station, may have affected their ability to build a stronger case against the key players.
According to the official, investigators were planning to have a confrontation between Thierens and Jones and some of the alleged masterminds when the prisoners mysteriously slipped out of the lockups.
Police said they have information which suggests that some police ranks facilitated their escape.
They have since placed a female lance corporal who was on duty at the time, under close arrest. A report on her case is with the Director of Public Prosecutions and she is likely to be charged today. She has resisted all attempts to have her placed in the East La Penitence Station lockups with the other female prisoners. According to a source, an elderly rural constable who was also on duty at the time may be dismissed. Investigators believe that another female rank, who worked at another police station, was also involved in the escape plot.
She was reportedly transferred to another location with immediate effect.
Despite this setback, police have said that they will proceed with charges against some of the alleged leaders of this organisation.
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