Roger Khan in Police custody for murders of boxing coach and Ronald Waddell
Hours after he arrived in Guyana after being deported from the United States, Guyanese Police have decided to keep convicted drug lord Shaheed Roger Khan in custody as they investigate the September 2005 murder of well-known boxing coach, Donald Allison and the January 2006 murder of political activist Ronald Waddell.
Khan’s lawyer, Glenn Hanoman just before 2am Saturday told the media outside the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) that the allegations were put to his client in his [Hanoman’s] absence.
Khan was whisked away to the CID Headquarters at midnight Friday where his photographs and fingerprints were taken after arriving at the Cheddi Jagan International Airport (CJIA) on an American Airlines flight.
Hanoman said that Khan will be kept in Police custody pending the outcome of the investigation but noted that there is no decision to charge his client.
As a matter of fact, Hanoman said he was informed by senior detectives and officials at the office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) that the Police have no evidence upon which they can charge Khan for these murders.
“The Police have to do their work; they have a right to investigate whatever evidence they have, they have to follow up everything. I am aware, however, that there is no evidence in relation to either of those two matters.”
“I am aware that legal advice was given to the Police that there is no evidence upon which charges could be laid. The only logical thing is that they hope to get some sort of evidence from him which I doubt.”
The lawyer said it would be “improper” for the Police to keep Khan in custody for 72 hours.
“I think Police misunderstand that law. The law is not permissive, it is prohibitive. The constitution says you cannot keep someone beyond 72 hours without charging them. It doesn’t permit the Police to keep him for 72 hours if they have no reasonable suspicion and from all of my investigations, there is absolutely no evidence against him for either of those two cases.”
The lawyer was perturbed that the Police attempted to video his conversation with Khan; Hanoman said he had to insist that the Police give him some private space to speak with his client.
Meanwhile, the lawyer expressed optimism that the Police will keep his client safe.
Khan is being accused of ordering the execution of both Donald Allison and Waddell.
Waddell was executed outside his Subryanville, Georgetown residence on January 30, 2006, while Allison was gunned down outside the Ricola Boxing Gym in Agricola on the East Bank of Demerara on September 8, 2005.
On 15 June 2006 Khan was arrested in Suriname, Paramaribo with three of his bodyguards in a sting operation that Surinamese police said netted more than 200 kilograms of cocaine – the biggest cocaine haul in Suriname of that year.
Instead of being deported to Guyana, then minister of Justice of Suriname Chan Santokhi ordered that Khan would be flown to Trinidad where he was handed over to the US authorities.
In October 2009 Khan was sentenced in a courtroom in Brooklyn, New York to 40 years imprisonment for trafficking large amounts of cocaine in the United States of America, witness tampering and illegal firearm possession.
His sentences ran concurrently, which meant that he was only expected to serve 15 years. Khan was given early release from prison this year.