No new leads in suspected contract killings of two women

Two women have been brutally killed under identical circumstances one year apart and though police have leads that the motive for the killings may have been connected to property disputes, this cannot be proved, so both cases are at a standstill.

Although information is not coming in as they would like, the police say that their ears and eyes are still open and they are hopeful that one day they will get those crucial pieces of evidence which would identify the killers and put them behind bars.

On August 4 last, mother of one, Leriea Bristol a businesswoman of 285 Well Road, North Ruimveldt was gunned down as she opened her gate while 72-year-old Clementine Fiedtkou-Parris had several bullets pumped into her body as she walked out of her bedroom.

Clementine Fiedtkou-Parris
Clementine Fiedtkou-Parris

Speaking to Stabroek News recently on the Fiedtkou-Parris killing, Crime Chief Seelall Persaud said that there is no new information in the case thus far. He said without going into details that “we don’t know what the motive is… the land dispute was the only conflict in her life and that was a line of inquiry.” Persaud stressed that investigations are continuing into the matter.

A source close to the investigation told this newspaper that the case is now at a “stand still,” with the police still looking for leads. This newspaper was told that the police are yet to identify the two killers who calmly walked into the woman’s Lot 42 Robb Street Bourda house asking for her. The car, which was seen near the woman’s house days before the killing is also yet to be found, although an eyewitness had provided investigators with a licence plate number. Searches were conducted in several areas but ranks came up empty handed, the source said.

Stabroek News was told there are two leads the police are pursuing in relation to the land dispute issue. One is that the owner of a city business who was fighting for property which they had bought from a real estate agent played a hand in the killing. The other is that it could have been a woman who claimed that she had power of attorney and arranged for the property to be sold.

According to sources it is hard to tell at this point who the key players were as both sides had a lot to gain from Fiedtkou-Parris’s death.

This newspaper was told that the police have exhausted all their efforts in relation to the matter, despite arresting an employee who had visited the woman days before and demanded that she move out, even offering to pay her rent. The bogus power of attorney is yet to be found but this newspaper understands the woman who is said to be very old was spotted walking on a city street recently.

Stabroek News was unable to get a comment from Fiedtkou-Parris’s relatives.

As far as is known, the Fiedtkou family has been living in the property for in excess of 40 years, first having rented it. The owners migrated some time later and died overseas. The Fiedtkou family continued paying rent to a woman who was apparently known to the owners. She told them that she had power of attorney for the property but at no time did she present a document to that effect. The woman did not inform members of the Fiedtkou family that the owners were deceased.

Several years ago, family members insisted on seeing the power of attorney. It was then that they discovered  that the woman was not who she said she was, and as such rent payment was stopped. They later discovered that the owners were dead.

It was apparently at this point that Fiedtkou-Parris who was occupying the house at the time decide to move to the court for prescriptive rights. Prior to this the woman with the so-called power of attorney sold the property to the city business though a real estate agent. The occupants were also unaware of the sale until some time later.

During that time, Fiedtkou-Parris became a victim of threats but she still went ahead with her court matter. She was waiting for a date to attend court when she was slain.

Her attorney Sandra Kurtzious later issued a statement in association with two other lawyers in response to a Kaieteur News article which was published on July 2 and republished on July 3 and which contained “false and misleading information.” According to Kurtzious’s statement she recently filed for a Declaration of Title on behalf of “Clementine Fiedtkou” in respect of the property located at Lot 42 Robb Street. “Ms Kurtzious had no knowledge that Clementine Fiedtkou was a tenant and she had not so long ago in the High Court consented to judgement in an action against her for rent,” the statement said. In that action the woman was named as Clementine Parris.

Further, the statement said that opposition proceedings not an appeal challenging the bid for prescriptive right were filed by R Poonai to the Petition for Declaration of Title. That matter was not yet ready for hearing according to the statement, which asserted that there are some good grounds in support of the opposition proceedings.

D Sukhdeo, the statement added, acted as attorney-at-law in the sale and purchase of the property from Pete’s Real Estate to the owner of the city business.

Two men, one of whom was armed with a gun, went to the woman’s home and enquired for her around 7.45 pm, police said. As she came out of her bedroom, she was shot several times in the upper part of her body. The men then jumped into a waiting motor car while the injured woman was rushed to the Georgetown Hospital, where she was pronounced dead shortly after. A post mortem examination revealed that she was shot six times; she took three gunshots to the upper chest, two to the left arm and one to the back.

Bristol killing

While the Crime Chief could not give an update on this investigation, police sources told Stabroek News that it is still open. Several persons had been arrested following her death but back then police had said they were not being treated as suspects. No other arrest has been made.

Leriea Bristol
Leriea Bristol

When Stabroek News visited the woman’s home no one was there but neighbours said that the relatives had moved out shortly after the killing. They said that the property was now being occupied by tenants.

At the woman’s Robb Street business place, workers said that all her relatives were residing overseas. They were unable to provide this newspaper with contact details.

According to the reports gathered so far, around 21:05, Bristol was about to open her gate so that she could drive her car into the yard when a lone gunman walked up and shot her in the head. The bullet pierced her left ear before entering her skull. She would have died instantly. The gunman calmly walked back to a dark-coloured motorcycle driven by an accomplice. The two then sped into an adjoining street and disappeared into the darkness.

The killers had apparently been staking out the woman for some time as residents recalled seeing a motor cycle parked near the woman’s home the night before she was killed.

Police nearby heard the gunshots, but by the time they arrived at the scene the perpetrators were long gone. However, they recovered two spent shells from the scene.

Persaud had told Stabroek they were investigating the killing as a hit as nothing was taken from the woman before or after she was shot. Police were exploring two leads but some relatives were adamant that a man, who was once in the businesswoman’s life, was in some way involved.

According to Persaud the man whom the relatives suspect did make himself available to the police, and following some questioning he was released. Persaud explained that at the time of the ‘hit,’ the man was overseas but on his return home, he went to the police.

The man had reportedly left the country one week before the killing.

Persaud had told this newspaper the first line of inquiry being pursued was a recent event in Bristol’s personal life that led to some disputes. The second area of investigation is a property dispute that was before the court in which Bristol had to give evidence.

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