A man suspected to be a member of the Sindicato gang was killed late Wednesday night after security officers held off an attack that lasted for over an hour and a half at a mining camp at Black Water, Cuyuni, Region Seven.
According to information reaching Stabroek News, nine security officers from the Sheriff Security Services were at the time rendering their services to SSS Mining at the camp when they came under heavy gunfire from persons who they suspect to be members of the Venezuelan gang.
Speaking to Stabroek News yesterday, Chief Executive Officer of the security firm Amir Ahmad related that while they would usually have six officers stationed at the camp, because of “wash-downs” they sent in three more to serve as reinforcements.
“Last night [Wednesday], around 10 pm, one of the guys radioed in and said they were under attack. They ambushed us… We usually only have one watchman at the tower and the gate is always locked. Nevertheless, when the guys heard the gunshots they went into action and for the period of time there was back and forth firing and what we were told since is that they had high powered rifles,” Ahmad explained, while pointing out that the men that were present at the camp related that the attack subsided sometime after 11.45 pm.
“Our guards are equipped with semi-automatic AR-50… and there were six different points they were shooting from. We have watchtowers around the camp and we were able to retaliate from the ground and above the ground. The area is pitch dark and you can’t see more than 15 feet in front of you but they were able to see where the gunshots were coming from because those high powered guns would spit fire and light up the place,” he said, while noting that his personnel suspect that there were about six gang members attacking the camp.
During the attack, he said, the guards returned fire, which resulted in one of the gang members dying on the spot.
Ahmad related that after the attack subsided his men searched the outskirts of the camp after 3 am. During the search they found the dead man, who was lying on the ground with two handguns with matching rounds and rounds for an AK-47 rifle.
“They found the Spanish guy this morning [Thursday] along with the guns and bullets. We called in to the Eteringbang Police Station and covered the body,” Ahmad said. He noted that while none of his employees or other occupants of the camp were injured during the attack, the company’s dog was shot and killed by the bandits.
He added that they have since sent in more reinforcements and supplies, including more ammunition, which would have been almost depleted due to the lengthy exchange of gunfire.
While the identity of the dead bandit is unknown, Ahmad related that some of his men would have recognised him since they are familiar with the area and have knowledge about the gang and their activity.
Police Commander of ‘F’ Division Kevin Adonis confirmed that the attack occurred but was unable to give any additional information. He related that it takes some seven hours to reach the camp site and up to press time yesterday the investigators had not returned.
Ahmad also related that this is the first time his company has come into contact with the gang but it has been aware of its activities in other areas.