The police were earlier this week granted another 72 hours to detain the suspects in connection with last week Tuesday’s attempted robbery on Republic Bank’s Water Street branch.
Stabroek News was reliably informed that after being granted an extension to keep the suspects last Thursday the police were forced to apply an for extension on Monday because of the Camp Street prison outbreak as there was no place to remand the prisoners.
A total of five persons are said to be in custody.
The alleged mastermind of the foiled attempt Elton Wray, also known as ‘Peas,’ 25, of Eccles, East Bank Demerara was shot dead while trying to escape after a shootout with a guard.
The other suspects are bank employee Jamal Haynes and Keron Saunders, who accompanied Wray during the attack. Police had arrested two of their own ranks and another bank employee, who have been linked to the crime.
Wray, Haynes and Saunders, all wearing masks, stormed the bank around 7.35 am last Tuesday. They used one of the Automated Teller Machine (ATM) rooms to gain entry to the adjoining ground floor of the bank as employees were entering the building. The bank was not yet open for business.
Once there, they reportedly ran towards an area where there were canisters but they discovered that they were empty. Because the men opened fire, members of the Professional Guard Service (PGS), which protects the bank, responded and engaged them.
Bank workers were taken as hostages during the bandits’ attempts to flee but none of them was harmed.
Wray was shot once in his chest by a guard while trying to escape and was later pronounced dead on arrival at the Georgetown Public Hospital (GPH).
Saunders was promptly arrested while Haynes, said to be Wray’s best friend, was shot in both of his legs. He was hospitalised and later taken into custody.
Stabroek News was previously informed that the police were able to make a breakthrough in the investigation last Thursday evening following the arrest of a policeman attached to ‘A’ Division and a rural constable, both 21, and residents of the Lodge area.
Haynes, this newspaper was told, contacted the rural constable, who is a close friend, and told him about the plan to rob the bank. The rural constable then contacted the police constable and both of them agreed to go along with the others to rob the bank.
Last Monday night, the duo reportedly met Haynes and Wray in the vicinity of the National Cultural Centre, where they went over their plan. The following morning, they met at an Aubrey Barker Road location, where they are reported to have once more gone over their plan before proceeding to a South Ruimveldt location, where they boarded a hijacked car.
The newspaper was told that they then went to a location in Tiger Bay. From there, Haynes, Wray and Saunders were transported by the police constable in the stolen car to Water Street, near the Vendors’ Arcade. The rural constable remained in Tiger Bay.
After dropping the others off, the policeman parked the car behind the Vendors Arcade and remained there. However, on hearing gunshots and sensing that the plan had gone wrong, he fled, leaving the car abandoned.
Stabroek News understood that the rural constable was alerted to the shootout and he too abandoned the plan and left the Tiger Bay location.
It would appear that the plan was that after grabbing the money from the bank, the three gunmen would run through the arcade, jump into the car and return to Tiger Bay. Once there they were to split up the money and go their separate ways.