Andriff Gillard, the man who alleged he had been offered $7 million to assassinate President David Granger, yesterday acknowledged under intense questioning that he had had several brushes with the law as lawyers appearing at the Commission of Inquiry (CoI) into the alleged plot sought to discredit him.
During lengthy cross-examination by Christopher Ram, Glenn Hanoman and Ian Chang, SC, it was revealed that Gillard was even wanted by the police for threatening language.
Ram, who is representing Imran Khan, the brother of Nizam Khan, the man accused of orchestrating the plot, questioned Gillard on if his “run-ins” with the police were confined to the Grove/Diamond Police Station, to which the witness agreed. However, Ram told the CoI, while reminding Gillard that he was under oath, that he was charged in 2009 at the Blairmont Magistrate’s court with three others for armed robbery, which Gillard denied. “…That was not what I was told. I was driving and we were stopped and the thing was found in the car and I was subsequently released,” Gillard argued. Ram, also revealed that Gillard had charges of simple larceny, threatening language, threatening behavior and assault.
According to Gillard, most of the charges were wrong, while others were dismissed due to the virtual complainants dropping the matters. Ram also stated that Gillard was charged with assaulting his own wife. Gillard told the commission that this was a case he could not recall. “That charge, sir, was made at the Timehri Police district and a message was sent from that police station to Diamond to arrest you and those are the records,” Ram stated.
According to Ram, Gillard and his wife went home to the president of their Masjid one night, telling him that he (Gillard) would like him to get Nizam and Imran Khan in their joint presence for him to apologise to them. This, Gillard tried to deny but he said that he did go to the president of his Masjid to report on the recent threats by the Khans. “I went by him so he can ask them (the Khans) to stop it and if we can talk to one other in front of him because I was very fearful for my life,” Gillard testified. He said that the president of the masjid told him that he would organise a meeting between him and the Khans but they later refused to participate.
Ram later asked the witness if he had a Facebook page, which he confirmed he did. The attorney produced a screenshot of Gillard’s Facebook page to the commission. According to Ram, the particular screenshot bore a post made by Gillard, dated August 5, 2017, with the caption, “Nizam Khan…#Busted” and a picture of a machine gun. According to Gillard, he did make the post and the photo of the gun he downloaded from the internet. “So it is a fake photograph and Nizam Khan is busted? What impression did you want to give sir?…Khan was busted for this long black gun that you alleged that he presented to you?’’ Ram queried.
“…If as I saw on the news that Khan is saying that me and he had no relationship… then how will I know that Khan has a gun just like this if I have not seen it from him showing me…this is a picture to show the type of gun that was shown to me…,” Gillard explained.
According to Ram, the site where Gillard got the photo of the gun from, nationalguntrade.com, was taken down in February 20, 2013, but Gillard claimed that he googled and got the picture of the gun. The witness confirmed that he made the post in 2017. Ram informed the commission that copies of those documents will be handed over the commission.
Ram, before concluding, argued to the commission that Gillard is the plotter in the whole exercise.
Meanwhile, Hanoman, who is representing Commissioner of Police Seelall Persaud, asked Gillard if he had gone to another lawyer who had advised him on what to do before March 29, 2017. After meeting with the said lawyer, it is reported that Gillard went to the Ministry of the Presidency. When asked by Hanoman for the name of the attorney, Gillard declined. “He asked for his name not to be disclosed… I am familiar with him. I have said his name to the commission before but he had asked to keep it private…if (in) camera I would tell you,” Gillard explained to Hanoman.
Hanoman, who was puzzled as to when the lawyer’s name was mentioned to the commission, questioned this. Gillard said that he make mention of it when he was at the commission the last time but his memory failed him as to the exact time he said it.
Hanoman, during his cross- examination, questioned the witness about his mental capacity. “Don’t get upset with this next question…Have you ever sought treatment for any psychiatric condition?’ the attorney asked. “Nope,” Gillard responded. Hanoman later made a suggestion to him that he has the need for “attention.” Gillard said that if he is “physically ill,” he would have a need for attention. Hanoman explained to Gillard that the reason why he asked the question was because there are several psychiatric conditions that cause persons to see themselves as the “victim” of authority figures and that they would often go about making complaints and seeking attention. Gillard angrily asked the attorney if he “looked sick” to him. The witness reiterated that he was never treated for any mental condition. Hanoman later asserted that he thought Gillard was of unsound mind.
Guyana Police Force
Gillard, during the cross-examination, told the commission that before he went to the media, he was comfortable going to the police to make his report but he also had concerns that his report of the alleged plot may not have been handled in a professional manner since he knew that Nizam Khan “owned” the whole Guyana Police Force. Gillard agreed with Hanoman that if it were left to him he would not have gone alone to the Criminal Investigation Department, at Eve Leary. Gillard later revealed that he was taken there by someone. “They get a next CID in Grove by a snackette name Nizam Snackette, a next CID headquarters deh right deh all the same police ranks does be stationed right deh,” Gillard chortled.
Meanwhile, the CoI, which was expected to conclude yesterday was later extended to Wednesday after Hanoman and Ram informed that more witnesses needed to be questioned for the commission to be able to present a thorough report. Commissioner of the Inquiry Paul Slowe granted the request to have Deputy Crime Chief Senior Superintendent Reshi Dass, Police Legal Advisor, Claudette Singh and Lloyd Adams give evidence.