Irate passenger refused bail over having knife in minibus

A man who said he pulled out a knife because he was annoyed at having to travel in an overloaded minibus was yesterday remanded to prison when he appeared in the Georgetown Magistrates Court.

The charge, read by Chief Magistrate Priya Sewnarine-Beharry, stated that on August 30 at Georgetown, Collin Accra, 47, of Lot 3809 North Ruimveldt, had a knife in his possession without lawful authority.

Accra pleaded guilty to the charge, but offered an explanation.

Stating the facts of the case, Prosecutor Bharrat Mangru said Accra was travelling in a Sophia minibus when he became abusive to the driver. He was then told to leave the bus, but refused and threatened to chop the driver, the prosecutor stated.

He added that as a result the driver drove the bus to the Brickdam Police Station and when police ranks conducted a search on Accra, the knife was found in his pants’ waist.

When given the chance to speak, Accra said the minibus was overloaded and he told the driver that he did not want to travel in an overloaded minibus since it was against traffic laws and a breach of insurance.

He said the driver then told him to leave the minibus and he refused. At this, he said, the minibus driver and conductor became aggressive and were attempting to throw him out of the bus. It was at this point, he said, that he went into his bag and took out his kitchen knife.

Accra said that he told the driver of the minibus that he was not leaving the bus and if they wanted him to leave, they should take him to the police station.

Accra said when he arrived at the police station, the police officers did not listen to his complaints about the overloaded minibus. “They only checked me and when dem find the knife, they ready to arrest me,” he said.

“Them police tell me to take off all my clothes and bend down and squat. I refuse to bend down because I don’t want them to check my privates.”

Accra also claimed that he had $66,000 in his possession at the time of his arrest and that he only received 57,120 back from the police.

The prosecution objected to bail and Accra was remanded until today.

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