‘Justice is served’ – Marcus Bisram feels vindicated after CCJ sets him free

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Moments after what his lawyers deemed a landmark ruling by the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ), a beaming Marcus Bisram, the flamboyant businessman, said he feels vindicated and he believes that justice has been served.

“I feel great, justice has been served and I am very happy that my name is cleared and I could go back to my normal life,” a smiling Bisram told reporters during a press conference on Tuesday.

The ruling was a huge win for Bisram and his team of attorneys led by Queens Counsel Darshan Ramdhanie who has been before the court fighting the murder case for years. This slothful nature of the judiciary is what Bisram expressed the most “disappointment” in.

Ramdhanie also shared his client’s anguish but expressed satisfaction with the CCJ’s ruling.

Marcus Bisram (Photo: News Room/March 15, 2022)

“They [CCJ] have blazed the trail again and demonstrated that the rule of law is alive and strong in Guyana.  It takes time to get to this place and I do share Mr. Bisram, his own agony, of having to go through this process for so many years but we are at the end of it, the court has ruled on justice is served,” Ramdhanie stated.

For Ramdhanie, the ruling was significant as it challenged a law that has been in place for “over 50 years” in Guyana.

The law in question was Section 72 (1) and (2) (b) of the Criminal Law (Procedure) Act which empowers the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) to direct a magistrate to commit an accused person to stand trial in circumstances where said magistrate, after conducting a Preliminary Inquiry, discharges that accused person.

The Trinidad-based Court ruled in favour of an appeal filed by Bisram which challenged the Guyana Court of Appeal’s ruling that he stand trial for the 2016 murder of Berbice carpenter, Faiyaz Narinedatt.

In delivering the ruling, the President of the CCJ, Justice Adrian Saunders, ordered that the decision made by the Magistrate to dismiss the murder charge against Bisram be restored.

The CCJ also declared that section 72 of the Criminal Law (Procedure) Act violates the separation of powers and is also inconsistent with articles 122A and 144 of the Constitution.

The CCJ contended that if the DPP wants to instruct a magistrate in the future to commit any accused person to stand trial, the DPP will have to move to the High Court first.

“So Guyana has seen again, I believe, the work of the CCJ or Apex court with this landmark judgment,” he continued.

Bisram’s other attorney, Sanjeev Datadin added that the CCJ has taken the first step to right a wrong.

“It is not right that the DPP, who is a prosecutor and one of the adversaries in the fight, can tell the adjudicator of the fight – the magistrate – what to do…that is inherently wrong,” he explained.

But now, with the ruling in place and Bisram free to roam as he pleases, Datadin said that they are considering taking actions against the State.

Berbice carpenter, Faiyaz Narinedatt was killed in November 2016

“That will come after we have had some time because as you can imagine, the first and primary focus has been to ensure that Mr. Bisram clears his name and that he is restored as a free citizen.”

Bisram shared that he will remain in Guyana for a bit to spend some time with family and to also put legal systems in place to support the other men accused of the murder.

Bisram was accused of orchestrating the murder of Narinedatt, a 27-year-old father of two, who was killed on November 01, 2016. Narinedatt’s body was found around 03:30 hours on the Number 70 Public Road, Corentyne, Berbice. His death was initially reported to be the result of a hit-and-run accident.

It was later reported that Bisram allegedly made sexual advances towards Narinedatt, who objected.

Bisram, who holds dual citizenship, was extradited from the United States of America on November 21, 2019. He was charged with murder hours after his extradition.

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