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Cops in AK-47 probe no longer on close arrest

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By Leroy Smith

The four police ranks and one senior officer of the Guyana Police Force who were under close arrest pending the investigation into the smuggling of an AK-47 Assault Rifle out of the Police Headquarters, have all been taken off of close arrest.

Police sources have indicated that the ranks are now on open arrest after the 72 hours detention period for the ranks have expired. This means that they are now allowed to travel home and back to work.

The Civilian member of the Public who was also arrested on the same day (Tuesday, February 28, 2017) as the police ranks is however still in custody. It is unclear if the police sought and secured an extension of his detention period.

Several years ago, three police ranks were placed under close arrest for the shooting death of Damion Belgrave at the White Castle Fish Shop on Hadfield Street.

However after the 72 hours detention period had expired, the men were placed on open arrest and on the day that the Director of Public Prosecution advice that they be charged with murder, two of the men managed to escape before the police could have formally arrest them.

One of the ranks was recaptured shortly after while the other was killed in a shootout with the police during a robbery on the East Coast of Demerara.

On Tuesday (February 28, 2017), the Civilian drove out of the Police Headquarters with an AK-47 rifle in his vehicle. His vehicle was parked in the police compound overnight and it was placed under surveillance by ranks of the force who became suspicious that something was amiss.

The men are likely to be placed before the courts on Monday (March 06, 2017).

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