Trio remanded for arson of GECOM Linden building
Three men were on Friday remanded to prison for arson in relation to the fire that destroyed the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) building at Burnham Drive, Wismar, Linden last year.
Teon February called “Nut”, a 23-year-old porter of Canvas City, Wismar, and Marlon Hunter, called “Bushy”, a 21-year-old welder, of Fourth Street, Silver Town, Wismar; Byron Kendall, a 48-year-old businessman of Kara-Kara Linden, appeared virtually before Magistrate Wanda Fortune at the Linden Magistrate’s Court.
The men were not required to plea to the charge which alleged that on July 14, 2020, they unlawfully and maliciously set fire to the GECOM building.
Hunter was represented by attorney-at-law Yondessa Welcome-Mercurius while February and Kendall were unrepresented. The attorney made an application for bail but the police prosecutor objected noting that the crime is serious in nature since it was committed on a public building.
The prosecutor told the court that the matter is still under investigation by police in Linden. She further disclosed to the court that come Monday, February and Hunter are expected to appear in court for charges relating to break and enter with larceny.
Meanwhile, February was slapped with several other charges ranging from gun and ammunition to burglary. The firearm-related charges alleged that on July 5, 2021, at Sliver Town, Linden, he had a 9mm semi-automatic pistol along with 8 matching rounds in his possession, when he was not a holder of a firearm license. He was also slapped with two counts of break and enter, two counts of simple larceny and one count of burglary. February was not required to plea to the separate charges he faced.
Magistrate Fortune remanded the men to prison until July 30, for report.
Acting on information received police arrested the two men on July 05, 2021. In a video interview, the duo admitted that they were paid $150,000 by Kendall to execute the arson.
The arson was committed at the height of political uncertainty when the APNU+AFC Coalition refused to give up power although it was clear from a national vote recount that it had lost the March 2020 elections.
On Friday, a fourth man, William Roy Marshall, who is the driver of the Regional Chairman of Region 10, was arrested in connection with the crime. He is said to be the alleged mastermind behind the arson.