There has been another delay in the start of the hearing of an appeal for former Guyana Defence Force Coast Guardsmen, Sherwin Hart, Devon Gordon and Deon Greenidge, who are challenging their death sentence for the August 20, 2009 murder of Bartica gold miner, Dwieve Kant Ramdass. Records by shorthand reporters are still missing.
So far, the court has been able to find the minute book of trial Judge Franklyn Holder which contains a record of the summation of the evidence he gave to the jury, among other important aspects of the trial. Chancellor of the Judiciary Yonette Cummings-Edwards, who is on the panel of judges hearing the appeal, has reassured that every effort is being made by the court to locate the missing records.
As it is, the trial records from the judge’s minute book have to be typed up in order to form part of the records of appeal. This matter comes up for another hearing on December 17, which was set as a report date. In August 2009, the three former GDF Coast Guardsmen were charged and remanded to prison for Ramdass.
Following a preliminary inquiry, a Magistrate ruled that there was sufficient evidence against the men for them to stand trial for the killing before a judge and jury. And in May 2013, the men went on trial before Justice Franklyn Holder and a 12-person jury. They were found guilty of the crime, and were sentenced to death by hanging by Justice Holder.
The prosecution’s case was that on the day in question at Caiman Hole in the Essequibo River, the three men forced Ramdass into their boat and took him to the aforementioned location where they relieved him of $17M in cash, which he was carrying in a box to Bartica for his employer, before dumping him overboard.
Initially, the Court of Appeal had fixed October 18, for the hearing of the appeal. At that hearing, lawyers Nigel Hughes and Latchmie Rahamat raised preliminary issues as it related to the state of the records of appeal. Hughes had brought to the court’s attention that the records of appeal do not reflect a ruling on a Voir Dire made by the trial judge in relation to two of the appellants.
Gordon’s lawyer, Rahamat, who represented him at the trial stage, had told the court that she could recall the judge making a ruling after the Voir Dire was concluded. She however pointed out that this ruling could not be cross-referenced with the court’s typewritten records of appeal.
Apart from this, Rahamat pointed out that some of the evidence in the judge’s summing up was inaccurately reflected. For example, among other things, Rahamat said that what was said by one of the witnesses is recorded as being said by another witness. At that hearing, too, Assistant Director of Public Prosecutions Dionne McCammon admitted that in the typewritten records of appeal the judge’s summing up seems disjointed and “some of the pages do not flow.”
Jul 09, 2020…. Despite some early set backs By Sean Devers Arguable the best U-17 cricketer in the Ancient County of Berbice, Jonathon Rampersaud is a genuine all-rounder who bats left-handed and is a crafty...
Jul 09, 2020
Jul 08, 2020
Jul 07, 2020
Jul 07, 2020
Jul 07, 2020
WR: Trotty, I didn’t know that you had invoked my name in defence of election rigging until I read Freddie quoting you.... more
By Sir Ronald Sanders There have been unhelpful and destructive attacks by leading members and zealous supporters of the... more
Freedom of speech is our core value at Kaieteur News. If the letter/e-mail you sent was not published, and you believe that its contents were not libellous, let us know, please contact us by phone or email.
Feel free to send us your comments and/or criticisms.
Contact: 624-6456; 225-8452; 225-8458; 225-8463; 225-8465; 225-8473 or 225-8491.
Or by Email: [email protected] / [email protected]