Ex-GDF rank freed of illegal gun, ammo charges

first_imgPrincipal Magistrate Judy Latchman on Friday dismissed a series of illegal firearm possession charges against Jamal Hazel, a former Lance Corporal of the Guyana Defence Force (GDF).This development occurred several months after Hazel had been placed on remand, and in light of the Police prosecutor failing to provide the court with enough evidence to convict Hazel.Defence attorney Ravindra Mohabir informed the court that the Police had obtained a caution statement from his client by force; and he claimed that his client was severely beaten by the Police to confess to the allegation. And after proving to the court that his client was innocent, Magistrate Latchman dismissed the matter.Hazel had also been charged earlier this year for allegedly carrying out a series of robberies around Georgetown, in which he was alleged to have trailed his victimsFreed: Jamal Hazelon his motorcycle and robbed them at gunpoint. All the robbery charges were dismissed due to lack of evidence being offered by the virtual complainants.Hazel had denied all the charges, and his defence attorney, George Thomas, had told the court that his client had been taken to the dumpsite at Eccles, East Bank Demerara and severely beaten by Police on two occasions.On Hazel’s first court appearance, Police Prosecutor Arvin Moore had objected to bail on grounds of the seriousness of the offence, the penalty the charges carry, and the fact that the defendant was a soldier. Moore had noted that Hazel’s occupation had mandated him to serve and protect. He had added that the accused had been positively identified by one of the virtual complainants (VCs).last_img read more