Crime chief doesn’t see any targeting of Brazilians

The Guyana-Brazil Asso-ciation has expressed concern over the murder of three of their members in two days in the interior and Crime Chief Seelall Persaud says the cases are not of profiling but of robberies.

“I don’t see it as a case that Brazilians are targeted. It is believed that on all three occasions that robbery was the motive …robbery has been the motive for other murders in the interior too,” Persaud told Stabroek News.

The bodies of a Brazilian couple, Joao Veloza Nascimento and Eoldene Fernandes Dos Santos  were found  on December 27th  in a decomposed state tied up at Sandhills, Region Seven after they had left their mining camp at Puruni bound for Bartica.

Autopsies later revealed that Nascimento died from blunt force trauma. The cause of death of his wife was undetermined.

The next day the body of miner Antonio Silva was found along the Waimu Trail, Cuyuni. His autopsy revealed that he had been shot in his back.

Persaud said that investigations are continuing but that the police were concerned at the interior’s logistics and the force’s resources in coping with crime in that area. “The force is not alarmed. The force is concerned over the amount of resources that we have, the large expanse of the  interior …and we have been working with miners, the association as well as individuals  to enhance security in the area,” he noted.

Secretary of the Guyana-Brazil Associa-tion, Antonio Szala told Stabroek News that it appears the couple were robbed and then killed. He said that there are now calls for the area to be better patrolled as more Brazilians are being robbed and killed.

Recently there has been a spike in murders in the interior. Last month, the body of miner Clement David of Baramita, North West District was found with marks of violence to the head  on the roadway at Baramita. In previous weeks, three other miners were killed in a similar manner.

Two Sundays ago, the decomposed body of miner Andre Hercules was found with his feet and hands bound at Long Island, Middle Mazaruni, Region 7. The week before, miner Michael Morris of Cummings Park, Sophia was beaten to death at West Park Backdam, Cuyuni. Another miner, Terrence France, was found with chop wounds in a mining pit at 8 Miles Backdam, Port Kaituma on December 1.

The Crime Chief said that the force has been doing its best to beef up security in the hinterland and with limited resources has been doing well thus far as daily many miners transport large amounts of gold and cash without worry. Nonetheless, the force is strategizing on dealing with its limited resources, he said.


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