Convict appeals ‘excessive’ sentence for murder of GTM executive

Bert Whyte

Jailed for 57 years for the murder of GTM executive Bert Whyte, Clive Knights has filed an appeal with the Guyana Court of Appeal, arguing that the sentence imposed upon him by Justice Navindra Singh was excessive.

In his notice of appeal, Knights indicates that he will be adding additional grounds at the hearing of the appeal.

When the matter came up yesterday, however, acting Chancellor Yonette Cummings-Edwards had to adjourn the proceedings so that the court could make efforts to secure an attorney for Knights, who indicated that he lacks the financial means to so do himself.

Clive Knights

In the circumstances, hearing of the appeal has been adjourned until January 14th of next year.

The matter will be heard by the Chancellor and Justices of Appeal Rishi Persaud and Dawn Gregory.  

Representing the Chambers of the Director of Public Prosecutions is state attorney Stacy Goodings.

On June 18th, 2015, Knights was sentenced to 57 years after a jury found him guilty of murdering Whyte, who died after being stabbed twice to the chest on May 14th, 2012.

Justice Singh commenced the sentence at a base of 60 years but deducted three years for the time Knights had spent on remand awaiting trial. From the remaining 57 years, the judge had said that Knights was not to become eligible for parole before serving 30 years.

The state’s case against Knights was that he had stabbed Whyte twice to the chest at Bentinck Street, South Cummingsburg.

It was also stated that Knights had changed the licence plate on Whyte’s car before making his way to Berbice, where the car was later found abandoned.

After being stabbed, Whyte had managed to make his way to popular night spot, Palm Court and called out for somebody to take his phone and call an ambulance. He then collapsed. He was then placed in a taxi and taken to hospital.

Pathologist Dr Nehaul Singh had confirmed that Whyte had died from haemorrhage and shock due the perforation of the heart and lungs as a result of the stab wounds he sustained.

Whyte, who was 44 at the time of his death, had been the personnel manager at the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation for 10 years before taking up the position of Assistant Company Secretary at GTM insurance Company, where he had been working for six months prior to his death.

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