Cops to in­ten­sify ef­forts to cap­ture re­main­ing es­capees - Ram­nar­ine

Stabroek News - - REGIONAL NEWS -

Act­ing Po­lice Com­mis­sioner David Ram­nar­ine on Wed­nes­day promised that ef­forts would be in­ten­si­fied to re­cap­ture two es­capees who re­main on the run af­ter July’s prison breaks.

Cobena Stephens, who es­caped from the Camp Street Prison on July 9, as well as Paul Go­riah, who es­caped from the Lusig­nan Prison on July 24, re­main at-large.

“We have done work be­fore on them. We have had in­for­ma­tion, we re­sponded [but] it didn’t come up use­ful and we are go­ing to in­ten­sify our ef­forts now,” Ram­nar­ine

said dur­ing a press con­fer­ence, while adding that ef­forts had been di­rected mostly to re­cap­tur­ing Mark Roy­den Wil­liams, the mas­ter­mind of the Camp Street break­out.

Wil­liams, who was con­victed for mur­ders dur­ing the Bar­tica mas­sacre, was re­cap­tured by po­lice at Wel­daad, West Coast Ber­bice at ap­prox­i­mately 8pm on Mon­day.

Ram­nar­ine cred­ited the plan­ning and ex­e­cu­tion by the Joint Ser­vices for Wil­liams’ cap­ture.

“We were on this ball by ball. Long nights, [and] hard days, in keep­ing that com­mit­ment that we gave to this coun­try as law en­force­ment of­fi­cials that we will be re­lent­less and that we will be un­re­lent­ing in the pur­suit and re­cap­ture,” he stressed.

Ac­cord­ing to Ram­nar­ine, their in­for­ma­tion was that Wil­liams was des­per­ately try­ing to leave the coun­try and it was felt that out of “pride and dig­nity that he be cap­tured right here.”

Ac­cord­ing to the act­ing com­mis­sioner, Wil­liams was in­creas­ingly des­per­ate and the force had taken a de­ci­sive de­ci­sion some weeks ago that his sup­port base would be dis­man­tled. “In very quick time, he was vir­tu­ally left alone but he was still in con­tact with some­one else from his sup­port base that we had dis­man­tled,” he said. He said that it was care­ful plan­ning by the force that re­sulted in him be­ing re­cap­tured.

He added that per­sons have been charged with var­i­ous of­fences per­tain­ing to the dis­man­tling of the es­capees’ sup­port base. This in­for­ma­tion, how­ever, was not shared with the me­dia, given its sen­si­tive na­ture.

On Au­gust 9, the po­lice had of­fered a re­ward of $10 mil­lion for in­for­ma­tion lead­ing to the ar­rest of the re­main­ing prison es­capees, who at that point in­cluded Go­riah, Stephens, Wil­liams and the now dead Uree Var­swyk.

Both Ram­nar­ine and Pub­lic Se­cu­rity Min­istry Khem­raj Ram­jat­tan on Wed­nes­day as­sured that re­ward money would be given out, where war­ranted.

Ram­nar­ine ex­plained that the re­ward was of­fered dur­ing a cer­tain pe­riod of time when sev­eral Camp Street es­capees were still at large. “That is be­cause we had what you would call sig­nif­i­cant suc­cesses, a large num­ber were ar­rested in very quick time over a week and half pe­riod,” he said, be­fore adding that in the en­su­ing weeks the se­cu­rity forces were “starved of this kind of in­for­ma­tion, even though we had sent out a lot of posters and rel­e­vant po­lice con­tact in­for­ma­tion was pub­lished…we weren’t get­ting that piece of in­for­ma­tion that we should. We did get some, which led to Var­swyk’s demise.”

He as­sured that those who pro­vided in­for­ma­tion would be dealt with on a con­fi­den­tial ba­sis and their iden­ti­ties would not be re­vealed.

Ac­cord­ing to Ram­nar­ine, a lot of in­for­ma­tion about the ef­forts to re­cap­ture the es­capees was kept con­cealed be­cause of se­cu­rity con­cerns.

Cobena Stephens Paul Go­riah

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