‘Embarrassing’ that the State is not ready to prosecute Bisram – Ramjattan
Public Security Minister Khemraj Ramjattan says it is “embarrassing” that the State is not ready to prosecute murder accused Marcus Bisram, despite fighting for his extradition from the United States for two years.
Bisram is accused of orchestrating the brutal murder of 26-year-old carpenter Faiyaz Narinedatt between October 31 and November 1, 2016.
Minister Ramjattan said he is unaware of the issues being faced by the court to successfully prosecute the case but noted: “that is very embarrassing if that is what the behaviour is.”
After being apprised of the matter by the media at the sidelines of an event at the Police Training Centre, Camp Street, Georgetown on Wednesday, the Minister said: “what you’re telling me there is rather disheartening.”
Bisram was charged on November 21 at the Whim’s Magistrate’s Court with the murder of Narinedatt.
When the matter was recalled on December 09, State Prosecutor Stacy Goodings did not show up to disclose the evidence to the defence and efforts made by the Police Prosecutor to contact her in Georgetown proved futile.
This forced the Magistrate to postpone the hearing to December 16 for disclosure of all evidence to defence at the Springlands Magistrate’s Court.
An initial request by the State to adjourn the case to January 2020 was denied by Magistrate Alex Moore.
The State’s request for the case to proceed via a Preliminary Inquiry (PI) was also denied by the Magistrate who ruled in the favour of the defence for a paper committal instead.
The PI would have allowed the State to call witnesses to give testimony.
A scheduled visit to the scene of the murder was also postponed on Monday last after Magistrate Moore reported sick.
The series of events has since caused the defence to suspect that the State is deliberately delaying the case while Bisram remains incarcerated.
Minister Ramjattan has promised to meet with the Director of Public Prosecutions, the Chief Justice and the Chancellor to discuss the matter.
Ramjattan said he has been publicly requesting that the work of the Magistrates and prosecutors is enhanced so there can be more convictions.
Narinedatt was found dead on the Number 70 Village Public Road on the Corentyne Coast.
Police at first treated the case as a road fatality but Georgetown Police was sent to the Corentyne and took on the case as a homicide.
The Police’s claim is that at the party on the night of October 31, Bisram made sexual advances against Narinedatt, including touching his penis, and when Narinedatt refused, by slapping him, he told others to kill the carpenter.
He leaves to mourn two minor children and a young wife.