$745M GDF fuel racket: 2 ex-soldiers, businessman slapped with conspiracy charges

Ongoing investigations into a $745 million fuel racket at the Guyana Defence Force (GDF) have resulted in two ex-soldiers and a businessman being slapped with conspiracy charges.

GDF rank Delon Wilson

Those implicated in the racketeering are ex-GDF ranks Delon Wilson and Terry Milling. Wilson, 34, is from Kuru Kururu, Soesdyke-Linden Highway, while Mulling,35, is from 440 South Cummings Lodge, Greater Georgetown. The businessman is Gangadeo Sridat, 48, of Vreed-En-Hoop, West Coast Demerara (WCD).
On Friday, the trio appeared before Principal Magistrate Judy Latchman at the Diamond/Golden Grove Magistrates’ Courts and pleaded not guilty to the charge which stated that, between January 1, 2015, and June 30, 2020, at the Guyoil Terminal at Providence, East Bank Demerara, they conspired together with persons unknown to steal fuel valued at $745,559,430, belonging to the GDF.
These three persons were each released on $300,000 bail, and are expected to return to court on January 27, 2022.
Facts presented in court disclosed that Milling and Wilson were authorised to procure fuel from Guyoil on behalf of the GDF. However, a recent audit revealed that during the five-year period, the GDF did not receive $745 million in fuel. It is alleged that the soldiers sold the fuel to the businessman.
Back in 2020, reports surfaced of a massive fuel scandal involving the GDF and Guyoil. It was reported that hundreds of millions of dollars in fuel was stolen from the state-owned fuel company using GDF accounts and trucks owned by a prominent businessman.
A former APNU/AFC Government Minister and the former CEO of Guyoil had been implicated in the illegality, and were called out for their attempts to cover up the scandal. In fact, the Minister was recently arrested for questioning by members of the Special Organised Crime Unit (SOCU) into ‘Misconduct in Public Office.’ He was subsequently released after he allegedly fell ill.
Meanwhile, the 2020 Auditor-General’s Report said that, in 2019, motor vehicle GHH 7538 was flagged as receiving $181.567 million in fuel from the GDF.
The report pointed out that records for the vehicle were not found in either the GDF’s or Guyoil’s database. The vehicle was also flagged in the 2020 report for receiving a total of $67,455,000 in fuel. The vehicle uplifted 285,200 litres of gasoline and 184,000 litres of diesel, valued at $38.806M and $28.649M respectively.
“Audit enquiries revealed that the said vehicle was neither owned by the [GDF] nor Guyoil. In addition, there was no contractual agreement for this vehicle to uplift fuel on behalf of the Force,” the report said.
The Auditor-General’s Office said it was unable to verify whether the fuel was received by the GDF.
It was reported that the Goods Received Book for Base Camp Ayanganna was misplaced; while the records for Camp Stephenson at Timehri, East Bank Demerara (EBD) and the Coast Guard at Ruimveldt, Georgetown were under scrutiny by special investigators.