High Court frees cop accused of contempt charges

Inspector Prem Narine

Former Best Cop, Inspector Prem Narine , who was sentenced to seven days imprisonment by Magistrate Rhondel Weaver for contempt of court earlier on Wednesday, was later freed of the charge by the High Court.

Earlier on Wednesday, the Inspector had asked the Magistrate to address him with respect and this caused a back and forth which led the Magistrate to impose the sentence.

Chief Justice (ag) Roxane George-Wiltshire

Speaking with the Guyana Chronicle on Wednesday, Narine’s attorney, Siand Dhurjon explained that he was going to appeal the Magistrate’s decisions.

The matter was heard in the High Court before Chief Justice (ag) Roxane George-Wiltshire who found that the magistrate’s sentencing was excessive.She subsequently freed Narine.

When the incident occurred on Wednesday, Narine was testifying at the Georgetown Magistrates’ Court in the fraud matter against Mohammed Ali, also called ‘Gobin’ who is charged for impersonating the Minster of Health, Volda Lawrence, and obtaining $2.1M worth in phone credit from a city businessman.

The Inspector, who is attached to the Guyana Police Force (GPF), Major Crime Unit, while on the witness stand had asked Magistrate Weaver to review his statement to refresh his memory, however, it was strongly rejected by the Magistrate.

Narine told the Magistrate that he was displeased with the tone in which she addressed him and asked her to “address him with respect.”

This caused Magistrate Weaver to become annoyed, especially when there was a back and forth argument between the two parties.

Magistrate Weaver ordered Narine to get out of the witnesses box and instructed an officer to take him into custody.

Narine was then charged for contempt of court, which Magistrate Weaver described the officer actions as being ‘disrespectful’ and committed him to one-week imprisonment.

Narine is well known for his investigation into the murder of 76-year-old businessman Habidoodeen, the Berbice triple murder, in which two adults and a teenage boy were shot dead in the Cookrite Backdam at Mibicuri, Black Bush Polder, Corentyne.

Narine’s investigative work also contributed to the solving of the murder of fisherman Faiyaz Narinedatt, who was beaten and dumped on the Number 70 Village, Corentyne roadway.

Narine once again showed his commitment to the Force when he turned down $4M when the mother of the alleged mastermind, Marcus Brian Bisram and a relative of one of the suspects tried to bribe him to have the case dismissed.

The Inspector also headed investigations into the solving of two cold cases; namely, the murder of a father and his two daughters, who were burnt to death in a Robb Street hotel in 2014, and the 2012 murder of truck driver Jadesh Dass, who was shot dead and dumped on a Mahaica roadway.

In 2016, Narine was named the Best Cop of the Guyana Police Force for his commitment to the fight against crime.