Latest update March 25th, 2023 12:10 AM
Mar 03, 2023 News
…accused arrested and released following protest by relatives
Kaieteur News – A 31-year-old manager at Cabana Marketing located at Mon Repos, East Coast Demerara (ECD) and also of 1188 Eccles, East Coast Demerara (ECD) is reportedly a victim of armed robbery which occurred on February 27, 2023.
The victim has been identified as Lois Lezama. According to Police, the robbery occurred at approximately 19:00h at the Jackpot and Lounge located at Port Mourant, Berbice.
It is alleged that the robbery was committed by two identifiable males that were armed with small hand guns and was dressed in dark clothing.
Lezama told police that for the past year, she along with other workers would visit Berbice business locations that have the jackpot machines to collect cash. She alleged that around 19:00 hrs, she and two workers from the Cabana Marketing Company visited the Jackpot and Lounge Bar owned. The woman said she checked and collected a sum of $1.1 M and placed it into a black haversack with other cash totalling $5,246,240.
Lezama said she exited the bar and was attempting to enter her company vehicle that was parked in front of the business when she was pounced on by a male armed with a black hand gun.
He grabbed the bag from her hand but she held unto it, this resulted in the perpetrator dealing her three lashes to her right hand with the gun. The bag with the money was eventually taken and the perpetrator made good his escape.
Lezama said she made contact with the owner of the bar as well as her boss. The police was contacted some 45 minutes later where a report was made. Upon the police’s arrival, the area was canvassed for CCTV cameras to assist with the investigations.
Several persons, including Romel Thomas, were arrested’
Meanwhile, following the arrest and detainment of Romel Thomas called ‘Govo’, dozens of residents from Rose Hall Town, East Berbice Corentyne staged a peaceful protest along the Rose Hall Town Public Road yesterday over his arrest for the alleged robbery committed on Lezama at Portuguese Quarter, Port Mourant on February 23, 2023.
They also protested the manner in which the police conducted their investigations.
Thomas and other suspects were arrested on the night of the robbery following raids by the police. However, the residents along with relatives said that the accused was wrongfully arrested because he was not in the area when the crime was committed. According to them, Thomas is innocent.
Thomas’s mother, Barbara Harry told Kaieteur News, while protesting, that her son returned home around 19:00 hrs and shortly after a friend visited and they both left to purchase food.
“They leff and go by Sha Veh to buy food, that time the robbery done happen and dem int even know about robbery but the police go just so and pick up my son,” the woman told Kaieteur News.
The following day, Harry said she visited the police station where her son was held and was made to wait for hours. She said she left and returned around 14:00h and was told that Thomas would be placed on bail. Shortly thereafter, Thomas was taken to the Albion Police Station where an identification parade was done.
After the police procedure at the Albion Police Station, Thomas was escorted to his mother’s house. While there, the police reportedly ransacked the property in search of stolen money and firearms.
“Dem carry me son home and if you see what them do with my place, all the sugar, flour, everything dem dash way, he ask fuh lil water and the police knock way the water from he hand. Me want justice and me want dem to release my son because he na involved in that,” the woman said.
Meanwhile, a few hours after the protest, Thomas was released from police custody and the protesters left the Public Road.
Thomas, who spoke to Kaieteur News via telephone, said that he is left traumatized from his experience of being arrested. He maintained his innocence and went further to state that he was never involved in criminal activities.
The accused explained that he was heading home from work around 7:00 PM on Monday when he saw a police vehicle parked in front the business place. He said he passed the area and went home before leaving to purchase food with a friend at a restaurant and bar located opposite the business place where the robbery occurred.
Though thankful for his release, Thomas told Kaieteur News that he is concerned that he could be charged and jailed for a crime he did not commit.
They are being paid while we are being played…your pain is their gain!
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