Soldier cleared of $5M robbery after complainant refuses to testify

Jamal Hazel

Jamal Hazel, the soldier who was charged in January with stealing over $5 million in cash in an armed robbery, was yesterday cleared of the crime after the complainant decided not to offer any evidence against him.

Hazel, it was alleged, in the company of another and armed with a gun, had robbed Andrea Purdessy of a cellphone, valued at $210,000 and $400,000 cash, on January 11th, at Pere Street, Kitty. A second charge stated that on the same date at Pere Street, Kitty and in the company of another, he robbed Purdessy of $4,560,000 in cash, which was the property of Cyrilda DeJesus.

The two charges were dismissed as the complainant decided not to offer any evidence against Hazel.

Hazel, however, remained on remand as his trial on the charges of having an unlicensed firearm and ammunition continues.

The gun and ammunition were found in a container at the Middle Road, La Penitence home that Hazel shared with his aunt. The aunt told police that she knew nothing about the gun. Hazel and his aunt were both arrested and he subsequently admitted to being the owner of the firearm, police say.

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