Cops implicated in fraud case freed due to lack of evidence
Two officers of the Guyana Police Force, Special Corporal Jenneka Carmichael and Constable Tatayana Smith walked out of the Georgetown Magistrates’ Court as free women after the charges of illegal data interference were dismissed by City Magistrate Annette Singh due to the lack of sufficient evidence.
The duo was on trial for the offence which alleged that between January 28, 2021, and February 4, 2021, at the Guyana Police Force Headquarters, Eve Leary, Georgetown, they intentionally and without lawful excuse or justification, deleted electronic data from the Guyana Police Force Computer that was in the Administrative Office of the Felix Austin Police College Mess.
The charge was brought by the Special Organised Crime Unit (SOCU) and the women pleaded not guilty to the offence; they were out on $150,000 bail each.
Carmichael and Smith were represented by attorneys-at-law E. Stephen and Bernard DaSilva, respectively. The attorneys made no-case submissions to the court on the grounds that the Prosecution does not have sufficient evidence to uphold the charge.
The Magistrate upheld the submissions and dismissed the charge against the women. Tuanna Hardy was the prosecutor.
The duo was arrested as part of an investigation into the $19M fraud committed against the GPF Finance Department. The two officers were attached as clerks to the Felix Austin Police College.
It is alleged by SOCU that the two women intentionally deleted electronic data from the computer that was in the Administrative Office of the Felix Austin Police College.
A probe was launched by SOCU after information was received that falsified feeding accounts were stored on the computer but before SOCU could have accessed the computer, all feeding account files were deleted with the two accused being the only ranks that operated the computer.
Several other senior and junior cops were also charged in connection with the case.