Businessman Ryan Sugrim was on Monday hauled before Magistrate Zameena Ali at the Leonora Magistrate’s Court to answer to the capital offence of murder.
The 38-year-old man was charged for the murder of Zaila Sugrim. The charge stated that between May 11 and May 14, at La Union, West Coast Demerara, he killed Sugrim, his estranged wife. Zaila Sugrim’s body, which was burnt, was found in a shallow grave with a gunshot wound.
Sugrim was represented by Attorney-at-Law Sanjeev Datadin, who informed the court that his client did not confess to the murder. He also said that his client never led Police to the spot where the body was found. The lawyer also asked the Magistrate to warn the media to cease from publishing what he described as “inaccurate” information. The Magistrate, however, only listened to the lawyer’s submission but did not grant his request for the media to be warned.
Magistrate Ali remanded Sugrim to prison and the case will continue on June 25, 2019, at the Lenora Magistrate’s Court.
Reports are Zaila Sugrim was last seen at the Vreed-en-Hoop Stelling on May 11, 2019, when she allegedly entered a motorcar with her estranged husband.
Sugrim left her brother’s Diamond, East Bank Demerara (EBD) house, where she had been living for the past eight months, to be picked up by her estranged husband to visit the businessman’s home where she was expected to celebrate her eldest child’s birthday. However, by nightfall, the family became worried since it was very unusual for her not to call if she was out for long periods.
Her brother, Ahmad Haniff, grew worried and called her cellphone but the phone was turned off. Repeated attempts to reach Sugrim on her mobile proved futile and other family members confirmed that they had not heard from the woman.
On May 12, 2019, the worried brother visited the Diamond Police Station where he filed a missing persons’ report. In the company of several Police Officers, a visit was made to his sister’s estranged husband’s home but they were informed that he had not seen Zaila nor did he want anything to do with her.
Reports are close relatives reportedly inspected CCTV footage of the home but a particular time period was deleted. This was reported to Sugrim’s relatives, who in turn informed Police ranks. This led to ranks swooping down on the suspect’s La Grange, WBD property where a search was carried out, however, nothing was found.
After relatives made additional reports at the Diamond Police Station, another group of ranks swooped down on the suspect’s Crane home.
It was not until a search of the suspect’s motorcar was conducted by the police that they received a break in the case after blood was allegedly spotted in the car’s trunk. This prompted Police to arrest the suspect and impound the car.
After much interrogation, the suspect allegedly broke down and reportedly informed the investigators that he had buried the body in a shallow grave near his home.