Sep 17, 2009 News
A West Coast Demerara businessman is convinced that a group of men purporting to be policemen would have robbed them had it not been for a big bluff by his wife.
The men had already surrounded the Stewartville property of Malcolm Junor, which houses a grocery, when his wife indicated loudly that the police were on their way and the men hurriedly left.
Police believe that the men might have been members of an outfit from the Tactical Services Unit who might have been on an unauthorized operation in the area.
They are now checking to verify which unit it was.
“We believe that these guys wanted to rob us,” the businessman told this newspaper.
Junor, his wife and son occupy the upper flat of the Stewartville Back Street house, while his ailing mother-in law lives downstairs with a maid.
The businessman told Kaieteur News yesterday that the family was asleep when at around 23:00 hours they were aroused by loud banging on their front door.
Junor said that at first he thought it was his tenant, Kwesi, who lives in the building at the back of his house.
There was another set of banging and Junor got up to investigate.
“I say, ‘Kwesi ah coming’. It was strange because we don’t normally use the front door. Then I ask is who and a person say, ‘police’,” the businessman told this newspaper.
Junor’s wife, who was now fully awake, enquired who it was that the persons were seeking.
According to Junor, one of the men said they were looking for a man named Moti, to which he responded that no ‘Moti’ was living there.
From their vantage point, they observed two men dressed in black with ‘long guns’ in the yard and what appeared to be a police pick-up with a shed, parked on the road.
Because it was night, they could not see any marking on the vehicle nor could they see the licence plate, but they were almost convinced that the vehicle belonged to the police.
“I was going to open because when I look out I see the vehicle and men in black clothes. I know they does kick open door and beat people and I didn’t want nobody hurt up me skin,” Junor related.
But just at that time his wife began to cry and he instructed her to call the police at the Leonora Police Station, which she did.
However the response she got was not reassuring.
“She tell them at the station that some police at the house, but something looking suspicious. But the police there tell she, if is police, let dem do dey wuk. She begged them to send a rank to check but they didn’t come,” the businessman told this newspaper.
Junor said that he was in the living room and ensuring that the men outside could hear what he was saying, he asked his wife if the police were on their way and she responded with a loud “yes”.
He said that upon hearing this, the men in black quickly exited the yard and sped away in their vehicle.
According to the businessman, several neighbours saw the men but were scared to come out since they thought that the family was under attack from bandits.
“They didn’t realize that these men were real scamps. We believe that these men wanted to rob us. I was told that they went to the downstairs back door and tell the maid to open and don’t make noise,” he said.
In all he said they were eight men. Two of them had taken up positions on the front steps, two more were on the verandah, three were at the back of the building, while one stood near the parked vehicle.
About 30 minutes after the men left, ranks from the Leonora Police Station turned up at the scene.
Junor said that he went to the Leonora Police Station yesterday morning and spoke to a senior officer who promised to investigate the matter. He claimed that while he was at the station, one of the policemen there recalled seeing a patrol vehicle in the West Demerara District, but he was under the impression that they were there to make a drop-off.
However, this newspaper understands that no patrol from the Tactical Services Unit has indicated that they were in the West Demerara District on Tuesday night.
Crime Chief Seelall Persaud was contacted by this newspaper and he confirmed that the matter was reported and an investigation has been launched.
According to the Crime Chief, checks are being made at the Demerara Harbour Bridge to ascertain if a police vehicle was recorded as having crossed.
“An investigation will bring out if they were working legitimately. They went out to search and went away (when they heard the police at Leonora were coming), it looks suspicious,” the Crime Chief said. Tuesday night’s incident occurred a few weeks after men posing as policemen held up a delivery truck on the East Coast of Demerara and made off with $10M.
A few days earlier, three ranks from the Guyana Defence Force Coast Guard were charged with the murder of Dweive Kant Ramdass following a $17M robbery in the Rssequibo River.
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