Stepson, friend get over 10 years for killing estate worker
Roopnarine Persaud called “Helicopter” and Deonarine Lakhan called “Pascal” were on Monday sentenced for their roles in the killing of 39-year-old estate worker Kawal Shivnauth during a drinking spree in 2017.
Lakhan was sentenced to 10 years imprisonment, while Persaud was sentenced to 12 years and 10 months by Justice Sandil Kissoon.
In July, the duo was first arraigned before Justice Kissoon at the Georgetown High Court for the capital offence of murder.
However, the pair opted to plead guilty to the lesser count of manslaughter which read that they unlawfully killed Shivnauth on January 9, 2017, at Anna Catherina, West Coast Demerara.
While delivering his sentencing remarks on Monday, Justice Kissoon said that the consumption and abuse of alcohol continue to bring chaos to our society, with the presence of “rum shops” in every community.
“Most of the criminal cases occur in rum shops due to the excessive drinking of alcohol within the premises of those businesses,” the Judge said
According to Justice Kissoon, the time is right for the review of the laws which deal with the granting and monitoring of the liquor license.
He further added that businesses that ply such trades have little to no consideration of the consequences of their operation to alcohol abuse in Guyana.
He told the court that such communities are catalysts for incidents of domestic violence, spousal abuse, broken homes, and ultimately suicides.
Persaud was represented by attorney-at-law Dexter Smartt while Lakhan was represented by attorney Teriq Mohammed. The state was represented by prosecutor Muntaz Ali.
According to reports, Lakhan is Shivnauth’s stepson.
On the day in question, the duo along with Shivnauth were consuming alcohol at a rum shop in Anna Catherina.
Ali told the court that an argument ensued between Shivnauth and Persaud. Persaud armed himself with a knife and chopped Shivnauth.
The injured man picked up a beer bottle to defend himself, but Lakhan took it away and used it against him.
Persaud then stabbed Shivnauth several times with the knife.
Shivnauth was rushed to the Leonora Cottage Hospital and was pronounced dead on arrival.
His attackers made good of their escape but were later arrested by the police.