Businessman denies plotting to kill president

Nizam Khan, the businessman accused by his neighbour of plotting to kill President David Granger, yesterday rejected the allegation as false.

Khan’s neighbour Andriff Gillard earlier this year told police that the businessman offered him $7 million in 2015 to kill President Granger, after he asked him to loan him $6 million.

“This 6 million that Gillard came to you to borrow, what terms you attached to this $6 million?” Selwyn Pieters, attorney for reporter Travis Chase asked Khan, when he appeared before the Commission of Inquiry (CoI) probing the allegation and the police investigation.

Khan said Gillard never went to him to borrow $6 million and told of two incidents in which he had loaned money to the man—the first, the sum of $1,000,000 around 2005/2006 and the other, the sum of $800,000, in 2010/2011.

“When that election happen you did worried right? You did worried that Granger come in power and cut your runnings up yeah? Imran [Khan’s brother] did talk to you about duh to? That a new dispensation coming in and gon cut alyuh runnings up?” Pieters put to him.

“Nobody never talk to me about that. We don’t have no runnings to cut up,” Khan said.

“We gon deal with all a duh. Even if you don’t give the evidence, the commission gon get that evidence from other sources. That’s the investigative power of this commission,” Pieters replied.

Khan, the owner of a spare parts shop and halal snackette, also denied ever lending Gillard any money in relation to any gold mining work.

Contrary to reports, Khan said that when the police went to his house on March 29, they did not tell him what the allegation was, just that Gillard had made a report against him. He said they searched the upstairs and downstairs, which took between half an hour to 45 minutes, but he could not recall them searching his yard.

Khan stated that he made a phone call to his brother Imran and told him that Gillard had made an allegation against him and that police wanted to search his premises. He said his brother told him to cooperate.

When the confrontation was held at the Criminal Investigation Department (CID), he said he denied the allegation.

He said he was “frustrated” by Gillard’s allegation.

Asked by attorney for the CoI James Bond whether he was surprised he was able to get bail so early, Khan, in defence, said that the allegations against him were false.

‘You judging me wrongfully’
Khan told the commission that he has known Gillard for about 20 years as the two live next door to one another.

He, however, said that he and Gillard stopped being friends in 2014 after the man “robbed” him of $1.3 million, by failing to repay the money loaned to him.

During the course of the CoI, evidence has been presented that Gillard accused Khan of taking away two radio sets and pulling a gun on him.

Pieters read an extract from Gillard’s statement, which claimed that Khan had stopped his car in the middle of the road “like a roadblock” and asked him to return a battery which he had loaned to him.

He stated that Nizam went to the taxi base, and picked up two radio sets, saying that if he could not get his battery he’d be taking those.

“He picked up a gun and said he would cripple me if I don’t move, so I move, and he walk out the base with my radio,” Pieters read.

Khan denied the allegations and gave his version of events, which was that he had been at the car wash when Gillard came and told him to collect his battery.

He said, however, that Gillard had attempted to give him a battery belonging to someone called “Dirty” but he would not take it, so Gillard promised to buy him a new battery, after which he left. He related that this event, which took place in the presence of ‘Dirty’ and ‘Terry’ the dispatcher, occurred at the end of 2016.

This claim stirred Pieters, as Khan had earlier stated that the last time he saw Gillard face-to-face was in 2014, when he chased him out of his yard because they fell out over the loan.

Khan related he was called into the Grove/Diamond police station because Gillard reported that he had stolen two radio sets and threatened him. He said he was called in to the station two days in a row, and an officer told him that he would be called when he was needed, but he has heard nothing since.

He denied that he had asked his brother for assistance in the matter, and denied knowing that his brother was friends with the Commissioner of Police Seelall Persaud and has direct access to him. Khan also stated that he does not know Persaud. He said he knows who he is but the two have never met.

While he also initially stated that police do not usually come to his business for spare parts and denied knowledge of his brother’s access to the police, he later said that his brother would sometimes bring constables with their vehicles and have him fix “one, one fine thing,” He said he did not charge them but did not know if his brother did.

Meanwhile, Pieters became very abrasive towards the witness during questioning, stating that Khan looked like the type to carry out the actions related by Gillard.

“That’s what you did. That’s wah he seh you do. And you look like the type of guy that would do duh,” Pieters stated.

“Then you judging me, wrongfully. You just like he,” Khan replied.

Gillard’s statement also alleged that Khan was connected to a mining pit tragedy, which Khan denied. He related that his friend, Dillon Jones, died in that accident.

Asked by Pieters what the two did together aside from their friendship, Khan said nothing else.

He was also asked if he knew Trevor Abrams, a Geology and Mines Commission Engineer who was murdered in February, 2015, in an alleged contracted hit at Little Diamond on the East Bank, to which he responded no.

Pieters read another part of the statement, which said, “Foots came out of the bush…Foots seh, ‘Man Andriff, you make I gotta come til out of the bush to take care of something for the boss and you’re right there.’ I was cutting Imran hair in the yard. So he just came out of the bush in 2015 and I continue cutting he hair. He deh talking to me about Trevor so I ask he how are things in the bush….”

Pieters suggested to Khan that Gillard was talking about him when he referred to “boss.”

Pieters put it to the witness that he thinks he “runs things on the street” and that he is referred to as “boss,” and that he and his brother believe they “run things” in the street, which he denied.

He also denied that he and Imran threatened to have police officers fired on the night they were detained at CID, saying that he does not know what his brother did, Pieters would have to ask him.

Khan had, however, related that four police officers appeared before a court and were fired after they assaulted him.

Two police witnesses had testified to Khan’s brother, Imran, claiming to have had officers fired before, and threatening to do same to them while he was in custody.

Khan denied hearing his brother using expletives during his encounter with police, acknowledging that he voice was raised, but said also that he [Nizam] was concentrating on his statement at the time.

He also said he did not know if his brother grabbed a gun from a police officer.

Pieters also read a part of the statement where Gillard alleged that persons had told him to “be careful with Nizam”, as “they” would either send someone to kill him or Nizam would do it himself.

Khan then said that he has never given life and so cannot take anyone’s life, after which Pieters questioned how he could say that after he just admitted to being the same person who shot and killed someone during an alleged robbery. Khan said that the man had robbed him, and had shot at him, injuring him in the process. This was said to have occurred in 2015.

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