UG bomb suspect granted High Court bail
A successful application by Defense Attorney Latchmie Rahamat resulted in High Court Judge Justice Navindra Singh granting $10,000 bail to 25-year-old Sheneza Jafferally on Friday morning on the grounds that the State could not provide any evidence that the accused is a threat to public safety or will tamper with witnesses.
The University of Guyana (UG) student is accused of accused of threatening to bomb the University on February 5th.
She made her first court appearance on February 11, 2019, before the Chief Magistrate Ann McLennan at the Georgetown Magistrate’s Court where she was charged with the misuse of a telecommunication device and remanded to prison on the grounds of public safety.
The young lady was further remanded by Magistrate Rushell Liverpool on February 18 at the Sparendaam Magistrate’s Court until February 25, 2019.
As such, Rahamat filed an application for bail in the High Court where she relied on section 81 (1) of the Criminal Law (Procedure) Act cap 10:01.
Rahamat told News Room that Jafferally is not charged with an indictable offence but a summary offence which attracts no more than six months imprisonment.
“Our legislation says that once the jail sentence does not exceed two years, that person is entitled to bail. That is the point I’ve been making before all the Magistrates,” the Defense Attorney argued.
According to Rahamat, the State could not provide any “positive evidence” to support its claims of Jafferally being a threat or that she will tamper with witnesses in the case.
“Justice Singh even asked the Prosecutor on that point [to] list the witnesses who may be tampered with. The Prosecutor couldn’t say anything. He had no instructions or information on that,” the lawyer said.
The lawyer is confident that the charge against her client will not hold up in court.
“She has denied the allegations. I am of the view that the charge will not lead to a conviction and I think that it was a travesty that this young lady was remanded in the first place and further, I think it is also a travesty that the Police breached her constitutional right and kept her in custody for more than the 72 hours,” Rahamat told News Room.
The accused of Cummings Lodge, East Coast Demerara, pleaded not guilty to the charge, which alleged that on February 5, 2019, at Cummings Lodge, she used a public telecommunication device system to cause needless anxiety to the staff and students of the UG, knowing it was false.
She was charged under the Telecommunications Act of Guyana and could face a fine of not less than $250,000 nor more than $2M and a jail term of no more than six months if found guilty.