Yet another significant ruling was yesterday made by Justice Roxanne George-Wiltshire when she granted bail to murder accused Dilip “Peppie” Lambert. The ruling came days after a jury was unable to reach a unanimous or near unanimous verdict, thus returning with a hung jury.
Lambert is alleged to have thrown a lighted kerosene stove on his wife Pearly Cunja on October 2nd 2007. The woman died on November 10th, 2007 at the Georgetown Public Hospital. A post mortem examination conducted on Cunja revealed that she died from gastrointestinal hemorrhage as a result of multiple ulcers due to burns.
Lambert was originally charged with attempted murder, but after his wife succumbed he was charged with the capital offence of murder. He was later committed to stand trial in the High Court after a prima facie case was made out against him in the Magistrates’ Court.
Lambert’s lawyer, attorney at law Peter Hugh, in his bail application cited the length of time his client was imprisoned and also the time he could continue to be incarcerated because of the determination of the first high court trial.
Hugh told the court that Lambert is 44 years of age, a father of four and resided at Lot 86 Vreed-en-Hoop West Coast Demerara. The lawyer further told the court that Lambert had been incarcerated since November 2007.
State Prosecutor Rondell Weever did not make any objections to the application made by Hugh. The judge subsequently granted the accused $175,000 bail.
Earlier this month the trial for Lambert had commenced before Justice George-Wiltshire.
Manzoor Ally, a neighbour of the dead woman gave evidence in chief about the night in question when the incident happened.
According to Ally, he rushed over to Cunja’s home after he heard her screams.
Ally said that after he entered the woman’s yard he was confronted with the badly burnt woman, who told him that “Peppie throw de kero stove pun me”.
Another neighbour Joan Rutherford, who helped transport the woman to the hospital, also testified.
Rutherford recounted that on the day in question she heard some people shouting “fire…fire”. She said that she subsequently saw Pearly Cunja engulfed in flames.
Rutherford further told the court that she heard the man’s wife shouting “Oh God, Peppie ….you gon kill meh now”. The couple’s son Robert Cunja had also testified.
Lambert’s new trial is expected to be called up in the October session of the criminal assizes.
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