‘Capone’ linked to Bartica massacre

Police yesterday said that wanted man Michael Caesar called `Capone’ was apprehended by authorities in Suriname and that a witness has linked him to last year’s Bartica massacre.

According to a press release, the 27-year-old Lyng Street, Charlestown man for whom a wanted bulletin had been issued following the Lusignan killings, was held in the neighbouring country and handed over to local ranks last Saturday.

Caesar, the release said is being questioned in relation to the murders at Lusignan and Bartica as well as the murder of two men during an armed robbery committed at a shop at Agriculture Road, Triumph, East Coast Demerara on December 16, 2007.

“Identification parades have been held and Michael Caesar called ‘Capone’ has been positively identified by a witness as being involved in the Bartica killings.  He is in police custody and is likely to be charged shortly”, the police added.

No further details were provided on the capture.

It was reported in the Kaieteur News on Monday that the wanted man was arrested in Suriname but efforts by this newspaper to get confirmation of this from several senior police officers including Police Commissioner Henry Greene were unsuccessful.

This newspaper subsequently made contact with Crime Chief Seelall Persaud who said “we are not ready to publicize any information on that yet”.

Asked if he would at least confirm that the police did have Caesar in their custody, he responded with his earlier statement.

In the Triumph incident five men armed with rifles carried out the attack, killing Fazal Hakim and Rajesh Singh, while robbing Narendra Mukhram, the owner of the beer garden. There have been reports that the now dead Rondell Rawlins was seen at the scene but police have never confirmed this.

In the two massacres which occurred on January 26 and February 17, a total of 23 persons including women and children were killed by heavily armed gunmen. Several men have since been charged.

The call name `Capone’ was among four issued by the police shortly after a vehicle was shot up on the Ogle Airstrip Road last July.

In that incident, heavily armed gunmen opened fire on the vehicle as it left the Ogle Aerodrome in what appeared to be an attempted robbery.

The driver Michael Jackson was shot in the buttocks and was subsequently hospitalized.

Police later expressed an interest in four men with the call names `Trini’; `Yankee’; `Capone’ and `Sandman’.  A senior police officer had told this newspaper that the men were known characters.

It is unclear if Caesar is the `Capone’ being referred to.

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