Businessman John Pyneandy was cross-examined yesterday as he returned to the stand in the murder trial of Ganga Kishna and Vishkar Bissoon.
Kishna, a 75-year-old businessman and his employee, Bissoon, have been charged for the unlawful killing of Randolph Thomas and his two daughters Tressa Rozario, 14, and Feresa Rozario, 11.
Thomas and his children were trapped in their home at Lot 65 Robb and King Streets, Georgetown, which was razed by a fire in the wee hours of November 17, 2014.
Yesterday, Pyneandy, who rented the lower flat of the building which destroyed by the fire, under cross-examination admitted he had no one to corroborate that the elder accused had threatened to torch the building.
Questions were also posed to the witness about the issue of a property dispute. The questions however faced objections from the Prosecution.
Under questioning the businessman had related that during 2014, he operated a beverage depot, ice cream parlour and restaurant at the lower flat of the premises at Lot 65 Robb and King Streets, which he described as a three-storey wooden and concrete structure, which had no electricity from the Guyana Power and Light, (GPL).
He said that the only source of electricity for the family who lived in the top flat was a 12-volt battery, which they used to power several fluorescent tubes.
He also said that he renovated the lower flat of the building after an agreement between him and Jeffrey Thomas, Randolph Thomas’s brother, who sold palm trees at the premises.
The witness told the jury that a few months prior to him establishing the business, he saw Ganga Kishna at the premises with a blow torch in his hand. He said that the equipment was hooked up to two 100-pound gas cylinders that were inside of his car.
He recalled, “Two other boys were present with him (Kishna). They were cutting the locks and grills off of the hinges from my business. The police (ranks who were at the scene) warned them to stop, but they ignored the police and continued to cut.
“The police got a little more aggressive with them and that was when they stopped.”
At this point, the witness recalled that Kishna went into his car and retrieved some documents, which he showed to the police, telling them that he was the owner of the building.
According to Pyneandy, “I told the police that it wasn’t his building and the police told us to accompany them to the Brickdam Police Station.
“We met woman Sergeant Lewis who documented the issue in the Occurrence Book.”
He added that Kishna was warned by woman Sergeant Lewis to refrain from going to the premises and to let the court deal with the matter. However, Pyneandy recalled that Kishna returned two days later and began using threatening language.
“I came out and met him there. He was talking to a couple of people there saying that the property is his own. I approached him and asked him to leave, and he turned to me and said that the property is his own and that he was not going to leave.”
Pyneandy said he told Kishna, “You’re a mad man”.
Pyneandy said Kishna responded, “You’re going to see who is a mad man when I burn it (the building).”
The witness recalled, “I made a phone call to the Brickdam Police Station and spoke to Sergeant Lewis and she sent a patrol. (Kishna) was taken to the Brickdam Police Station Enquiries Office. I followed behind the patrol in my vehicle.
“Sergeant Lewis warned (Kishna) again. When we were leaving the station together, Ganga Kishna told me that I will regret all the monies I have invested in the building.”
According to Pyneandy, Kishna told him, “The first time I burnt it (the building), it didn’t come down, but this time I will bring it down.”
“You will go to jail,” the witness said he responded to Kishna, who replied; “I will get people to burn it.”
Following the fire which occurred in the wee hours of November 17, 2014, witness told the court that later that same day, he went back to the station to tender CCTV footage he obtained from one Mr. Khan who resided a short distance from the property. He revealed, too, that the building was not insured.
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