Andrew Peter Douglas, whose bullet-riddled body was found yesterday in a motor-car at Farm, East Bank Demerara was wanted for a series of murders following his escape from prison on February 23 and armed robberies prior to that.
A senior police officer when contacted yesterday on the crimes Douglas is accused of committing, described him as a "notorious criminal who has murdered and robbed a number of people."
Douglas, formerly of 32, Middle Walk, Friendship, East Coast Demerara, who is also known as `Fine Man' and `Todd Dexter', was once a member of the Special Constabulary, which is an auxillary of the Guyana Police Force with powers to arrest and conduct investigations into criminal activities.
Douglas gained notoriety in late 1999 when he was linked to the now deceased, infamous Lindon `Blackie' London in a series of armed robberies, particularly the America Street robbery in which several persons were shot, including a police officer.
However, more recently he became one of the country's most wanted men when he along with four others, Dale Moore, Troy Dick, Mark Fraser and Shawn Brown, shot their way to freedom from the Georgetown Prison on Mash Day, February 23. They have since been accused of committing several armed robberies and murders.
`The five escapees' as they have since been called were accused of gunning down one of Guyana's most feared police officers, Senior Superintendent, Leon Fraser on April 2 at the back of Yarowkabra, Soesdyke/Linden Highway. Following this, seven other police officers were gunned down and last Saturday Deputy Head of the Customs Anti-Narcotics Unit (CANU), Vibert Inniss was gunned down in Buxton.
Douglas was videotaped earlier this year in army fatigues with a rifle while making a statement that was controversially broadcast on two television channels, proclaiming his innocence and making several allegations against individuals in public life.
Andrew Douglas as he menacingly appeared in the videotape with gun at the ready.
On March 9, 2000, Douglas was nabbed in neighbouring Suriname and brought to Guyana under tight security to face a number of charges. At the time he was said to be a close associate of London, who was gunned down in February of that year following an 11-hour siege and shootout at the Toucan Guest House at Eccles, and was said to have also sought refuge in Antigua.
At a press conference on February 9, 2000, prior to London's death and Douglas' capture, former commissioner of Police, Laurie Lewis had said that in their pursuit of the two wanted men they had travelled to a number of Caribbean countries to check leads.
A wanted poster issued by the police for Douglas following the brazen September 22, 1999 America Street robbery, said that he was armed and dangerous and a $25,0000 reward was offered for information leading to his arrest and conviction.
On March 14, 2000 Douglas made his first court appearance along with six others and he was refused bail after not being required to plead to fourteen indictable charges.
He was charged with being involved in the America Street D. Singh & Sons cambio heist during which $18 million was stolen, the Didco robbery in Cowan Street on September 1, 1999 when it was stated that $635,502 was taken and he was also accused of being involved in the January 10, 2000 $13 million National Insurance Scheme (NIS) robbery.
He was also charged with attempting to murder policeman, Ewart `Toots' Hudson, Mubarack Khan, Vishnu Narayan, Jermaine Brower and Brian `Tussie' Nelson during the America Street robbery.
And during the Didco robbery he and his accomplices reportedly robbed employees Sharon Ramdehol, Gail Baird and Rakha Ram Singh of gold jewellery valued $72,250 and a Taurus revolver along with ammunition to the total value of $70,600. He was also accused of attempting to murder Singh during the said robbery.
After Douglas was remanded to prison he climbed onto the prison roof on at least two occasions professing his innocence and lamenting the length of time he was languishing there without his matters being expedited.
It was on February 23, which is Guyana's national holiday for its Republic anniversary celebration, Douglas along with the four other escapees made a bloody escape from the Camp Street prison.
They left behind the lifeless body of prison officer, Troy Williams and seriously wounded Roxanne Winfield, another officer.
Following their escape, Guyana has been under siege from a number of criminals with numerous businesses being robbed, policemen and security guards being murdered and a number of shootouts in and around the city. The five were directly linked to the murder of Fraser and afterwards the police had offered a whopping $10 million reward for information leading to their recapture.
On May 16, Acting Chief Magistrate, Juliet Holder-Allen issued arrest warrants for Douglas and the four other escapees after they were charged along with Colville Kellman with robbing Patrick Seebarran of Patsans Trading Services on May 3. They were accused of robbing the man at his Campbellville home of US$23,000, a Sony video camera valued $30,000 and $30,000 in cash.
It was on May 9 that Douglas' tape was shown on the two television stations in which he said he had broken out of jail because he had been incarcerated since March 2000 and was not getting any justice.
He said that he was brought from Suriname, where he was a resident, to answer a number of charges which were wrongfully instituted.
He had also appealed to the public to understand his fight which he claimed was one for justice for himself and others locked away in jail awaiting trial.