Aug 05, 2017 News
…admits being paid to smuggle ganja into Lusignan prison
Akeem John, a driver attached to Cevon’s Waste Management Service was yesterday jailed for three years after he admitted to trafficking 889 grammes of marijuana. He had attempted to smuggle the marijuana into the Lusignan Prison, East Coast Demerara on Thursday.
John, 25, of 114 Middle Walk, Buxton, East Coast Demerara, was arraigned before Magistrate Peter Hugh in the Cove and John Magistrate’s Court where he pleaded guilty to trafficking 865 grammes and 24 grammes of marijuana respectively. He was jailed for three years on each of the charges and fined $30,000. The prison terms will run concurrently.
Police Corporal David Goodridge represented the prosecution.
Police said that around 10:45hrs on Thursday, ranks acting on information conducted a search on the Cevon’s Waste Management truck, just before it entered the ‘Old Compound’ of the Lusignan Prison. Ranks unearthed a haversack containing the marijuana and two cartons of cigarettes.
According to a police release, “The driver and two porters, one being a female were searched and 24 grammes of cannabis were found in the driver’s pants pocket.”
John told the court that someone paid him to smuggle the items into the prison and that his colleagues were innocent. He further told the court that he had bought the illicit items.
He is expected to be charged with a similar offence on Monday. Kaieteur News understands that police are awaiting advice from the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP).
Director of Prisons Gladwyn Samuels indicated that it is possible that the same waste disposal crew might have smuggled items into the prison before.
Responding to the discovery, Samuels said, “I am not surprised, because we still have corrupt people in the system. You put systems in place and they are now using civilians.”
Also on Thursday, a snap prison search in two dormitories, two landings cells at the New Amsterdam Prisons unearthed eight cellular phones, three cell phone batteries, three ear phones and a cell phone display, five cell phone chargers, 16 cigarette lighters, two tattoo machines, five improvised weapons, 20 packs of cigarettes and three grammes of cannabis.
The search was headed by ‘B Division Deputy Commander Superintendent E. Cooper, along with 20 police ranks and seven prison officers.
Also, between 09:40 and 12:30hrs, that same day ranks of the Joint Services searched Timehri Prison and the following prohibited items were found: eight lighters, seven smoking utensils, 16 improvised weapons, 8 packs of cigarettes, two dining forks, two pairs of scissors, five cell phone chargers, a bottle of pepper sauce, three cellular phones, a tattoo machine, a quantity of tobacco and 305 grammes of cannabis.
On July, 9, last, prisoners managed to acquire flammable items which they used to destroy most of the Georgetown Prison. Eight inmates also escaped after killing a warden.
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