Reporters arrested for alleged extortion
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TWO media operatives, Gary Eleazer and Alex Wayne, are in police custody for allegedly extorting $1 million from a businessman to remove an offensive post published by the Guyana News Network (GNN), a “slanderous” online entity.

This was according to a report shared on Saturday by Attorney-General and Minister of Legal Affairs, Anil Nandlall S.C, on his official Facebook page.
The report stated that the media operatives were found with the cash when they were arrested on Friday during a police sting operation along the East Coast of Demerara.

Reports are that the businessman, on August 29, filed a report to the police claiming that GNN posted an article with his photographs attached, alleging that he was involved in illegal activities.
In a statement to the police, the businessman allegedly denied the claims and stated that it was an attempt to humiliate, embarrass, and cause emotional distress.

The victim told investigators that he was contacted by the duo, who are allegedly close associates of a businessman with whom he has an ongoing dispute and told him that it was he who told them to publish the article. They then allegedly demanded a large sum of a million to remove the said post.

According to the report, the police, as a result of the information given by the businessman, conducted a sting operation on Friday between 15:40hrs and 16:35hrs. In addition to certain instructions, the police reportedly gave the businessman marked bills to give the duo.

The two reporters reportedly arrived at the location and during a conversation with the businessman, they allegedly demanded $1 million to remove the offensive Facebook post.
Based on the report, the duo admitted that they were among the admins on the GNN page. They reportedly revealed too that an APNU+AFC activist, Rickford Burke, is also an admin on the page.

The men were reportedly later arrested by police with the divided cash on them. The police also confiscated two cellular phones and a laptop which was also found in their possession.
According to the report, ranks also conducted a further search at the home of one of the reporters and seized a laptop and three hard drives.

While under caution, one of the suspects reportedly admitted that he acted in concert with the other along with the businessman who has an ongoing feud with the victim, to create and publish the said post on GNN’s Facebook page, the report stated.

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