Two escapees among seven killed
- sniper rifle, grenades, `walkie talkies' found in city house By Wendella Davidson
Guyana Chronicle
October 29, 2002

Related Links: Articles on crime
Letters Menu Archival Menu

TWO of the February 23 prison escapees were among seven persons killed in separate shooting incidents in the city and on the East Coast Demerara yesterday morning.

Police Commissioner Floyd McDonald, at a news conference at Police headquarters at noon, reported that six persons had died, including dangerous prison escapees Dale Moore and Mark Fraser.

A man who was shot in an incident on the East Coast and hospitalised, died yesterday afternoon, becoming the seventh fatality in the drama that began before dawn.

Mr. McDonald said Police had also uncovered an arsenal of heavy weapons, `channa bombs', grenades, `walkie talkies' and cell phones, among other items within 36 hours of operations which began on Saturday last.

Two of the books found in a house used by the bandits.
The Commissioner who said Police are facing a "serious problem", said they were still in the middle of their operations, which included the use of tracker dogs to hunt bandit/bandits wounded yesterday.

McDonald reported too that businessman Brahmanand Nandalall, also called `Bramma', proprietor of Keishar's Store, Camp Street, Georgetown, who was abducted by gunmen on Thursday, was "alive and out of captivity".

Dale Moore was identified as one of two persons found dead in a shootout in Lamaha Gardens, Georgetown, while Mark Fraser was one of two persons found dead in a car after an armed confrontation between the occupants of two cars travelling in opposite directions on the East Coast Demerara.

The other dead are Lancelot Roache, found in the car with Fraser on the East Coast; an unidentified gunman found at the Lamaha Gardens scene; another fully clothed and wearing a green bulletproof vest found lying on his back in Le Repentir Cemetery, Georgetown, and an unidentified man shot dead in a house from where a grenade was thrown at the Police.

A third person, identified as Franklyn Solomon, who was in a third car in the East Coast incident, was also reportedly shot and subsequently died at the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation (GPHC).

It is yet to be determined whether Solomon was accidentally caught in the crossfire or was in any way involved in the shooting incident.

McDonald said the arsenal found at the various scenes included:

** 13 firearms: one 9mm Highpoint Rifle, Model 995; one 12 Gauge Maverick Shotgun, Model 88; one 9mm Uzi, Model 61; two 7.62 x 51 mm FN rifles; one 223 Ruger Rifle, Model AC 556; one 7.62 x 39 Model M 70 Assault Rifle; two 270 Winchester Raptor Rifles with telescopic sight; two 9mm MAC 11 semi-automatic pistols; one 9mm Glock Pistol, Model 17; one 9mm Tanfoglio Pistol, Model TA 90.

** 45 magazines consisting of 33 M 70 magazines; eight FN Magazines; one 223 Ruger magazine; one Glock Magazine; two 9mm MAC 11 magazines.

** Three fragmentation grenades.

** One flare.

The safe house of the bandits.
** Ammunition - 2,778 rounds of .62 x 39; 68 rounds 7.62 x 51; 103 rounds of .30; 19 rounds 270; 29 rounds 45 calibre; three rounds of .38 Special; one round of 380; 44 rounds of 9mm; 51 rounds 12 gauge and four rounds of 223 along with a suitcase containing `channa' bombs and one salt bag with Channa (chick pea).
Included too and which were also displayed during the news conference were two bibles - a red and a black; a quantity of medical supplies; three books `The Illuminati 666 Book 2'; `The Antichrist 666 Book 1' and `The Philosophy & Opinion of Marcus Garvey'; one flop hat; cell phones; a card containing two bottles of `Potable Aqua' emergency drinking water; seven Motorola hand-held `walkie-talkie' communication sets (four medium and three small), and four pairs of number plates PHH 1643; PHH 6872; PHH 3783 and PHH 6393.

Commissioner McDonald gave the following chronology of events:

** 06:00 hrs Saturday October 26 - Police based on intelligence, arrested a suspicious-looking 22-year-old man of Buxton at the New Amsterdam Ferry Stelling. A search of his person unearthed an FM rifle which investigations revealed belonged to Constable Ramphal Pardat, called Clifton, who was one of three men killed last July in Rose Hall, Berbice, during a daring robbery.

The man also had a Smith and Wesson 9mm rifle, 38 rounds of 7.62 ammunition; nine rounds of 9mm ammo and a quantity of clothing.

Police are investigating for possible connection with robberies and murder including that of two Policemen. Pardat and Outar Kissoon were the two Policemen killed during the Rose Hall incident.
** 03:30 hrs, yesterday - members of a Police unit reported on radio that they were under gunfire from a car in the Bel Air/Lamaha Gardens, Georgetown area and requested tactical support. Ranks returned fire and subsequently discovered a body believed to be that of Dale Moore and later that of an unidentified male in the general area.

A search of a building which the gunmen allegedly occupied and from which they attempted to exit, unearthed an arsenal of arms and other items. A car with a false licence plate was also found at scene.

** 07:00 hrs, yesterday - at Annandale, East Coast Demerara, the occupants of two cars, a green and a white, approaching from opposite directions, engaged each other in gunfire. Two men said to be prison escapee Mark Fraser and Lancelot Roache of Lance Wireless Connections, Stabroek Market, the occupants of the green car, were killed. A .22 weapon was found on the body of Roache and an M .35 pistol on that of Fraser.

** 08:15 hrs, yesterday - Oleander Gardens, East Coast Demerara - a 9mm pistol and a hand grenade were found. Suspected to be either dropped from or discarded by one of two men who were seen hurrying from the city for the East Coast.

** Continuing their operations, Police stormed a house at Bonasika Street, Campbellville, Georgetown, were they found 12 channa bombs, a motorcar, a receipt for another car and four live rounds of ammunition.

** Police received a report that an unidentified, fully clothed male and wearing a green bulletproof vest was found in Le Repentir Cemetery. Police were still seeking to find out who the dead man is, how he received his wounds and whether he was part of any of the incidents and had escaped.

** In Lamaha Gardens, Police went to one of the targeted houses and were confronted by a grenade thrown by someone from the house. The Police retaliated with firepower and subsequently a man was found dead in the area. Police are seeking to establish his identity.

When the Chronicle arrived at the Lamaha Street scene of the shooting just before 06:00 hrs, just houses away from Minister of Home Affairs, Mr. Ronald Gajraj's residence, Police had already cordoned off the area and a sizeable curious crowd stood on an opposite street looking on in awe.

A burgundy car with its bonnet smashed in was against an electricity pole from which wires dangled, and a Policeman was observed pulling the body of a gunman clad in black shorts and black vest from under the bridge of the yard of the home of a former public servant. Some spent shells were found at the scene.

The body of an accomplice lay on the parapet of the next door residence and blood was also splattered on the white concrete fence and behind it.

Just around the corner in a small ditch in the vicinity of a Guyana Water Inc. pump station was a green motor car PHH 4904, apparently discarded by the bandits.

The former public servant's house was riddled with bullet holes, the yard splattered with mud and on the parapet was a huge pool of blood.

Some three houses from nearby Duncan Street, a house said to be owned by a city realtor, was the safe house of the gunmen and the large cache of arms was found there, Police said.

McDonald confirmed that someone from the house was in Police custody assisting with the investigation.

There was no indication of how long the gunmen had been living at the house.

While at the scene, a female resident of Sophia reported that a bloodied shirt had been abandoned by a gunman in her nephew's yard.

According to the woman, the wounded bandit took a grey jersey belonging to her nephew off the fence and left his bloodied shirt behind.

McDonald said the Police were using tracker dogs to hunt the wounded gunman.

It was not long after media operatives had returned to Lamaha Gardens from Sophia that news of the discovery of the dead man in the cemetery was received.

The brown-skinned dead man who lay on his back was dressed in blue denim jeans, grey and red track shoes, black and red striped jersey and with a green bulletproof vest

McDonald, at his news conference, said that based on yesterday's findings the Police are facing "a serious problem". He said that the possession of `channa bombs' (bottle bombs) by the bandits is an indication of the level of operations which the Police have faced over the past seven months.

Referring to the sniper weapon found among the cache discovered in the Lamaha Gardens `safe house', McDonald pointed out that this was not the work of ordinary criminals.

He added that the Police were continuing their efforts in a bid to have all the persons in what may be a "seemingly large gang" brought to justice.

It was at this point that McDonald, in response to queries, said Nandalall was "alive and out of captivity" and that he may have had discussions with the Police.

He said he had no information whether he had been in custody of any of the men who were killed.