A businessman who is accused of trafficking two Venezuelan men to work on his farm, was yesterday remanded to prison after he was arraigned in the courtroom of Chief Magistrate Ann McLennan.
The court heard that 61-year-old Feezal Shaw, a businessman of 69 Soesdyke Linden Highway, held two Venezuelans against their will and forced them to work on his farm by threatening to report that they are illegal in the country.
With this threat, the defendant allegedly refused to pay the victims the salary they agreed to when they were first employed.
The first charge stated that between February 14 and June 14, last, at Soesdyke, Linden Highway, Shaw engaged in trafficking in persons, in that he recruited, transported and harboured Hector Jose Rodriguez, in that he forced him to work without payment by making constant threats to have him deported.
It was further alleged that between February 14 and June 14, last, at Soesdyke, Linden Highway, Shaw engaged in trafficking in persons, in that he recruited, transported and harboured Eduardo Zarate Vivas, in that he forced him to work without payment by making constant threats to have him deported.
Shaw was not required to plead to the indictable charges after they were read to him by the Magistrate.
Attorney-at-law Haymant Ramdhani in a failed attempt to secure bail for his client told the court that his client is a wildlife exporter.
The lawyer added that his client was convicted in 2005, and served three years for trafficking narcotics.
He went on to tell the court that if bail is granted to his client, he would return to court and adhere to any conditions by the court.
However, Police Prosecutor, Simone Payne opposed to bail being granted to the defendant on the grounds of the serious nature of the offence and the penalty the charge attracts.
According to the Prosecutor, on February 14, last, the Venezuelans entered Guyana illegally and on the following day, they were taken to a house at Soesdyke.
The court heard that the victims were told that they would be paid $10,000 for each cage they built for exotic animals, which the defendant normally exports.
The Prosecutor added that the victims were however forced to work on a farm, where they had to feed and take care of animals.
According to information, after working for three days on the farm, the Venezuelans complained about the work and they were paid $5,000 each.
It was disclosed to the court that on June 6, last, the victims were each given $100,000 and was promised the remaining of the money, but it was never given to them.
The defendant then took away the victims passports and kept it in his custody.
The matter was then reported, an investigation was then carried out; hence, Shaw was charged for the offence.
The Magistrate after listening to the facts remanded the defendant to prison until October 15 for a report.
Oct 16, 2018By Sean Devers in Trinidad In association with Regal, Vnet, Noble House Seafoods & Cascadia Hotel In murky conditions and played before virtually empty stands, Guyana Jaguars, led by a 79-run...
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