(Trinidad Guardian) A “hitman” is believed to have shot his own boss as he attempted to shoot and kill his intended victim yesterday at a pre-arranged “meeting place” along El Socorro Road South in San Juan.
The intended victim was a businessman from East Trinidad. He and his six-year-old child were in his SUV when the shooting occurred. The child was in the backseat. Luckily, the child was unhurt in the attack but police said his father, who was shot in the shoulder, was severely traumatised. Police said the incident is believed to be domestic related and stemmed from accusations of an alleged affair.
According to a police report, at about 10.25 am police officers responded to a shooting at El Socorro South. When they arrived they found a 35-year-old businessman who had been shot in the right shoulder. He was in a vehicle with another man who was also shot and the child.
Police said while the two men were in the vehicle a gunman walked up and opened fire on the vehicle through one of the front passenger windows. The businessman attempted to drive off during the attack but crashed into a nearby trailer truck. There were three bullet holes in the SUV’s front driver’s window in the aftermath of the attack.
Police said it is alleged that the Sangre Grande businessman was lured to the area by someone he knew. Police said when the person who called the meeting approached the vehicle the businessman asked him to join him in the vehicle. Police said the man was reluctant at first but eventually got inside the vehicle.
It is believed that when the hitman arrived on the scene and saw the vehicle he walked up to the driver’s side of the vehicle and opened fire. He did not know that the man who allegedly hired him to carry out the contract hit was also seated in the vehicle.
Police yesterday went to the Eric Williams Medical Sciences Complex in Mount Hope where they interviewed both men. The suspect, 33, along with the businessman, were up to yesterday under heavy police guard at the hospital.
Less than 36 hours prior, in an unrelated incident, officers of the Special Operations Response Team intercepted the “hitman” while he was on his way to allegedly kill a First Division prison officer on Wednesday night.
Senior sources close to the operation told Guardian Media that they got a tip-off that the “hitman” was on his way to assassinate the prisons officer and intercepted him in a stolen vehicle near Oropune Gardens, Piarco. The suspect, who is also wanted for a recent murder in central Trinidad, was on his way to pick up another accomplice and firearms before heading to the prison officer’s home. The hit was allegedly part of a larger hit ordered by a prisoner which was targeting five prisons officers.
Subsequent to Wednesday’s incident, National Security Minister Stuart Young sent a stern warning to criminal bosses who run their empires by orchestrating contract killings from behind the prison walls with their associates on the outside.
“I want to send a strong signal to anyone, including those in the prison system, because there are a number of criminals in the prison system, who for too long, have been allowed to operate behind the bars of prisons as though they can continue to run their criminal empires on the outside and they could continue to communicate with the persons on the outside and send threats not only to prisons officers but also to law-abiding citizens. If they are thinking they can threaten persons, it is not going to be tolerated,” Young warned during Thursday’s post-Cabinet press briefing.