SOCU seizes over G$10M from convicted drug trafficker
On November 13, 2020, Justice Navindra Singh granted an order for the forfeiture of US$48,560 (G$10,440,400) and G$1,400 from convicted drug trafficker, Kevin Gordon on the grounds that the currency is the proceeds of crime.
The Court further ordered the State to transfer the currency to the consolidated fund as provided for pursuant to the Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism Act Cap 10:11.
Additionally, the Court further ordered the respondents to pay cost to the applicant in the sum of G$1.5 million on or before December 18, 2020.
The facts of the case state that on May 28, 2017, at 08:52h at Parika, East Bank Essequibo, the currency was withheld from Gordon by Officers of the Customs Anti -Narcotics Unit (CANU) during a search of his haversack, which was also found to contain narcotics.
Gordon was subsequently charged and convicted for trafficking in narcotics. During the search, he denied ownership of the currency and claimed that it belonged to one Deon Williams. Williams indicated that the currency was his property and it was derived from the sale of fuel.
The State led evidence that Williams was not licenced to deal in petroleum and petroleum products. The court was satisfied that the penalty for breach of the Guyana Energy Agency Regulation includes imprisonment for three years.
The State proved its case on a balance of probability and the court was satisfied that the currency is the proceeds of crime gave judgement in favour of SOCU by ordering the confiscation of the cash as part of the proceeds of crime. (Guyana Police Force press release)