Crabwood Creek farmer’s murder could have been a ‘hit’

–police source

Deoprakash Lalbachan

As the police in the Upper Corentyne area continue to investigate Friday night’s murder of a Crabwood Creek farmer, they are following leads that the incident could have been a ‘hit’.

Deoprakash Lalbachan, also known as ‘Deo’ and ‘Williams,’ 59, of Lot 22 Grant 1651, Crabwood Creek, a cash crop and poultry farmer, was pronounced dead on arrival at the Skeldon Public Hospital, minutes after 11 pm on Friday. He was stabbed five times about his body.

It was initially believed that the man was stabbed during what appeared to be a robbery which was carried out sometime around 10:30 pm on Friday.

However, a usually reliable police source close to the investigation yesterday afternoon told Stabroek News that they have arrested a male suspect, also from Crabwood Creek, who is the brother of the prime suspect. The source stressed that they have identified and are on the hunt for the prime suspect, who is an ex-employee of the deceased man.

The senior police source explained that while initially they had suspected that the stabbing was done by a “kitchen thief” who was confronted by Lalbachan during a supposed robbery, they have information which now suggests that it could have been a “planned hit staged to be a robbery.”

The source said that they are investigating both theories in order to nab the perpetrator(s).

According to the source, investigators have so far discovered that the deceased reportedly owed a sum of money to known smugglers in the area where he resided. The source noted that the theory is that the known ‘pesticide smuggler’ would have enlisted Lalbachan’s ex-employee to carry out an attack on him.

The source said that based on information revealed, the deceased would have invested heavily in a large shipment being brought from Suriname to Guyana. The source said that they have information that while the deceased sold the smuggled pesticides, he would have failed to pay fully for the items. “It’s pointing that the same people who would have sold the item could have contacted the same persons who know him to go and commit the act,” the source said.

However, according to the source, since Lalbachan would have shouted ‘them a kill me’, investigators believe that the prime suspect would have been accompanied by others during the attack. As such, investigators are hoping to identify those who would have also been a part of, or had knowledge of the attack.

Meanwhile, Stabroek News was also told that other than the knife, which is the suspected murder weapon, a ‘camouflage vest’ was also discovered at the scene of the crime. The source yesterday confirmed to this publication that the prime suspect was seen wearing an identical vest on the day of the attack.

Lalbachan’s widow, Nalinie Lalbachan, 55, on Saturday had told Stabroek News that she was in the upper flat of her house, while her husband, a father of three, was in the lower flat, when the fatal attack occurred, sometime around 10.30 pm.

She stated that Deoprakash was watching television and she assumed that he had fallen asleep. However, minutes to 11 pm, she heard him shout, “Nalinie! Come here! Them want to kill me! Them a bore me!” She said she thought her husband was having a nightmare, but after rushing downstairs, she saw that he was bleeding from his abdomen. “When me went to am, he say, ‘Them come! Them come for kill me!’ And that’s all.”

The woman recounted that she placed her husband to lay on the floor and alerted other residents, who assisted her in rushing him to the Skeldon Public Hospital where his body is presently being kept pending a post-mortem examination.

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