Though a warrant was issued for the arrest of the main witness to testify in the Number 60 Village wedding house murder trial, he failed to show up in court on Wednesday and Justice William Ramlal upheld no-case submissions.
Twenty-two-year-old, Saheed Abrahim of Kilmarnock, Corentyne walked out of court a free man but not before receiving a stern warning from the judge. The witness, Yogindra ‘Steve’ Ramkarran was reportedly “not found.”
Abrahim was accused of stabbing 19-year-old Yogeshwar ‘Vicky’ Roopnarine to death at a wedding house on December 28, 2002. State Prosecutor Satyesh Kissoon had told the court that the stabbing occurred at the home of Basil ‘Centipede’ Rodrigues during a wedding celebration.
He said a police rank, Andrew Ward, who also testified, took Roopnarine to the hospital in an unconscious state and he was pronounced dead upon arrival.
Pathologist, Dr. Vivikanand Brijmohan had testified that the victim died as a result of shock and hemorrhage due to a stab wound to the stomach.
Rodrigues who was called to give evidence on Monday had informed the court that the incident occurred on the night before his daughter’s wedding.
He said around 10 pm he went to his backyard to cook when he heard shouting on the parapet in front of his house and he saw a crowd.
He said he “bust de crowd and go inside and see Vicky lay down on de ground” and saw what appeared to be blood on his abdomen.
He said he knew the deceased as he used to visit his home often. He lifted him up and took him in his yard while “searching for transportation.”
He said 20 minutes later he stopped a passing police van and the ranks left with the injured man.
According to him ranks returned the following day around 8 am and walked through his yard to go behind his back fence where they retrieved a knife and red cap.
Defence lawyer, Crawford, submitted that the elements of the offence of murder have not been made out.
But State Prosecutor Satyesh Kissoon replied that “some of the elements were made out” and that while the injuries were indeed inflicted there was no way to prove that the accused had done it.
Justice Ramlal told the accused that there is a strong suspicion that he was involved in the incident.
He also said it appeared that there was reluctance by police to summon witnesses and that he suspects that there was “witness tampering.”