… chief justice frees former Best Cop of contempt charge
ACTING Chief Justice Roxanne George-Wiltshire on Wednesday afternoon ordered the release of Police Inspector Prem Narine who was sentenced to seven days in jail by a city magistrate for contempt of court, online news outlet, News Source Guyana has reported.
According to News Source, the chief justice’s decision was the result of an application to the High Court by the inspector’s Attorney, Everton Lammy-Singh. Lammy-Singh argued that the seven-day sentence by Magistrate Rondel Weever was unjustified, explaining that the inspector was never informed of the charge against him. He contended that the charge and sentence were bad in law and excessive, News Source reported.
The chief justice ordered that Inspector Narine be released from custody.
Narine, a former Best Cop awardee was earlier in the day sentenced to seven days imprisonment by Magistrate Weaver for contempt of court, after he asked her to address him with respect. Narine was at the time testifying at the Georgetown Magistrates’ Court in the fraud case against Mohammed Ali, also called ‘Gobin,’ who is charged with impersonating Minister of Public 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 Crimes 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 then 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 since there was an argument between the two parties. The magistrate then ordered Narine to get out of the witness box and instructed a police officer to take him into custody.
Narine was then charged for contempt of court, with Magistrate Weaver describing the Narine’s conduct as ‘disrespectful’ and sentenced him to one week in prison.
Speaking with the Guyana Chronicle on Wednesday was Narine’s attorney, Siand Dhurjon, who explained that he will be appealing the magistrate’s decisions and his client is expected to be released soon.
Narine is well known for his investigation into the Berbice triple murder,in which two adults, including 76-year-old businessman Habiboodeen and a teenage boy were shot dead in the Cookrite Backdam at Mibicuri, Black Bush Polder, Corentyne.
Narine’s investigative work had also contributed to solving the murder of carpenter Faiyaz Narinedatt; Narinedatt was beaten and dumped on the Number 70 Village, Corentyne roadway, allegedly at the behest of U.S.-based Guyanese, Marcus Brian Bisram.
Narine once again showed his commitment to the force by refusing a $4M bribe allegedly proferred by Bisram’s mother and a relative of one of the suspects, to have Bisram’s case dismissed.
The inspector also headed investigations which resulted in the solving of two cold cases: 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 Best Cop of the Guyana Police Force for his commitment to the fight against crime.