In a disturbing escalation of attacks on businessmen in the interior, a 53-year-old Brazilian gold miner was ambushed and shot dead last Saturday at Waiamu, Cuyuni/Mazaruni, shortly after leaving his camp to purchase items for his business.
Police said that the body of Antonio Silva was found around 16:00 hrs at Waiamu Landing, about an hour after he had left his camp.
Sources said that the body bore shotgun injuries to the back.
According to reports, Silva, a dredge owner, had left his camp around 15:00 hrs on Saturday. He was reportedly accompanied by a young man who claimed that he saw when the miner was shot.
The youth reportedly fled back to camp and alerted the other crew members who returned to the scene and found Silva’s body.
The body was taken to the Bartica Hospital mortuary.
Police have made no arrests.
A source who knew the victim described him as an individual who worked hard to maintain his family in Brazil.
Silva was slain on the same day that the bound and decomposing bodies of 42-year-old Joao Veloso do Nascimento, and his wife 52-year-old Edilene Fernandes Dos Santos, were found at a checkpoint on the Arimu trail, Region Seven.
The victims owned a dredge and other businesses in the interior and were residing at Bartica.
Reports disclosed that the couple left their camp at the Sand Hill area, Cuyuni, Region Seven, about a week ago on an All Terrain Vehicle (ATV) and were heading to Bartica, reportedly to purchase mining supplies with the intention of working through the Christmas holidays. However, they never arrived in Bartica.
Their bodies were discovered in a decomposed state Saturday just after midday. There was no sign of their
Meanwhile, an official from the Brazilian Mining and General Association told Kaieteur News that the Association had received reports that gunmen had attacked a boat transporting Brazilians in the Cuyuni River on Sunday.
The official said that he had received reports that a miner known only as ‘Branco’ was slain in the attack.
The official also complained about the exploitation of Brazilian miners by rogue elements of the police force and some Guyana Geology and Mines Commission (GGMC) staffers.
The source said that many more Brazilians have been slain than have been reported.
Meanwhile, other reports suggest that an armed gang operating within the Arimu trail, Region Seven is targeting miners; robbing and terrorising them.
Police had indicated that they had beefed up patrols in the interior to cater for miners coming out of the district with their hard earned wages for the Christmas holidays.
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