Armed bandits tie up workers, rob gas station

Armed bandits on Thursday evening stormed the R Prasad Service Station and escaped with a quantity of cash and gas cylinders after they tied up the pump attendant and security guard who were on duty at the time.

The incident occurred around 23:30 hrs during which pump attendant Dhareswar Budhai, 59, and security guard Sheik Hassan, 55, were the only two employees on duty.

They were both tied up in the washroom area of the business premises by one of the five identifiable armed men who invaded the service station located on the Railway Embankment at Mon Repos, East Coast Demerara (ECD).

The R. Prasad Service Station at Mon Repos, ECD where the robbery occurred.
The R. Prasad Service Station at Mon Repos, ECD where the robbery occurred.

They managed to escape with $14,200, two cellular phones and twelve gas cylinders.

According to a statement issued by the police, investigations have so far revealed that the bandits went to the service station in a white motor car and ordered Budhai and Hassan to fill the car’s tank.

It was during this process that they exited the vehicle and relieved the employees of the above mentioned valuables, the police said.

The men were both gun butted and ordered not to move from the washroom or they would be killed.

Up to late yesterday afternoon, no one was arrested. However, the police are currently in the process of reviewing the CCTV footage from the premises.

When Stabroek News visited the service station yesterday, it was open for business. Police officers and detectives had just visited and were conducting investigations.

The owner, Rabindranauth Prasad, said he was in Berbice, when he received a phone call informing him of the robbery. He said the incident has left his employees traumatized.

Relating what he was told, Prasad said the car used to carry out the robbery had no licence plate.

Prasad explained that based on the information he received, after ordering the pump attendant to full the tank, one of the men exited the vehicle. That bandit took the security guard and tied him up, before returning for the pump attendant.

The thieves also had an implement, which they used to cut the chain which secured the grilled cage where the gas cylinders were kept, he said.

Apparently, after filling their car with the gas cylinders, the bandits were forced to leave two of their crew behind.

Not long after, two soldiers pulled into the service station in a vehicle followed by a man driving a bus. They possibly were regular customers, as they enquired about Budhai, Prasad was told.

At this point, the two left-behind bandits became scared and scaled the fence and an alarm was raised.

Prasad said his business has been in existence for about one year and this is the first time it has been robbed. He was thankful that his employees were not seriously injured and acknowledged the police for their quick response.

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