Loric Williams and Chris Douglas, former employees of the Cheddi Jagan International Airport (CJIA) who were charged last June with attempting to smuggle cocaine in rum to the United States of America, were yesterday found guilty of the crime.
The pronouncement was made by Chief Magistrate Ann McLennan, who set May 30th for the presentation of probation reports as well as for sentencing. Douglas, who had been out on bail, was remanded along with his co-defendant until that time.
Williams, 24, of 51 Prospect, East Bank Demerara and Douglas, of Timehri, were initially charged along with Keon Brewster on June 2nd, 2015, with possession of 6.034 kilogrammes of cocaine for the purpose of trafficking. All three men had entered not guilty pleas at the time, but Brewster, 21-years-old then, changed his plea to guilty just a few weeks after the arraignment and was sentenced to four years imprisonment and fined $15,020,800.
In March of this year, Brewster made an appearance before the court as a witness in the matter, and testified that Douglas and Williams had played no part in the drug smuggling operation.
He stated then that on the day the narcotics were found, he had gone to the restroom and seen Douglas, who was working on an air conditioning unit in front of the restroom.
He added that as he went into the second washroom in the restroom, he saw four bottles on the ground in the corner section of the toilet. Brewster told the court that because of his love for alcohol, he opened one of the bottles and tasted it then proceeded to place three into his bag and left one behind.
When asked if he knew Douglas, Brewster reminded the court that he only recalled seeing him working at the CJIA on May 29, 2015, when the cocaine was discovered.
He also denied knowing Williams, while pointing out that he only spoke to him yesterday while they were in the lock-ups.
However, under cross-examination by the prosecution about how long he knew Williams, Brewster stated that he had known him by seeing him around in his area.
When questioned about his reasons for testifying on behalf of the defendants, Brewster stated that he had changed his plea to guilty because he committed the offence and that he is in no way attempting to mislead the court.