Multimillion-dollar gold heist: Top Cop praises Major Crimes Unit for breakthrough in case

– dispels notion that gold dealers leading investigation

Police Commissioner Nigel Hoppie on Tuesday stated that the Force’s Major Crimes Unit (MCU) is leading the investigation into the multimillion-dollar robbery committed on Wallison Enterprise while at the same time praised the Unit for the role it played in apprehending the perpetrators.
“The Major Crimes Unit would have played a significant role and they continue to play a significant role in bringing the perpetrators to justice. The Police Force has been leading the investigation as they are mandated to do in law and they are continuing to do that,” the Top Cop said.
Hoppie, at the time, was responding to questions from reporters in relation to the Police’s role in the investigations. There have been speculations that the Police Force is taking a backseat in the investigations and that several prominent persons in the gold industry are leading the effort to bring the perpetrators to justice.
However, the Commissioner reiterated that the Police Force is the only body legally mandated to investigate the crime and they are doing exactly that.
However, Home Affairs Minister Robeson Benn related that the investigations are ongoing but reserved his comments on the issue. He, however, said that there were serious security deficits at the gold establishment in relation to the way customers and clients are being processed.
He also added that while some of the money has been recovered, none of the gold was found as Police remain on the hunt for the other two persons who were caught on camera and the driver of the getaway car.
On August 10, 36-year-old Delroy “Bug” Jackson and Peon Lee also known as “Nino Brown”, both security officers attached to the business and 32-year-old Keyon King, a serving GDF Sergeant were remanded to prison in relation to the robbery.
Police stated that on Thursday, August 5, 2021, while being armed with guns and in the company of each other, they robbed Francis Santos Lumes of 60 ounces of raw gold valued at $20 million and $38 million in cash. In addition, they robbed Fernanda Carmicheal of a cell phone valued $350,000. Further, it is alleged that the men robbed Francis Santos Lumes of a gold chain valued at 140,000, a gold ring valued at $60,000, and $14,000. Finally, they were accused of robbing William Da Silva of a cell phone valued $60,000.
The three men had confessed to the daring robbery. It was reported that on the day in question at about 10:00h, three armed men went to the Lot 23 Gordon Street business and indicated that they had gold to sell. However, within minutes of entering the establishment, they held several staff members at gunpoint and demanded that they open three safes where the money and gold were secured.
After committing the robbery, the armed men bound and gagged the cashier and two other staff members after which they locked them in a room. Moments after escaping in a white motor car, the cashier managed to free herself and raise an alarm.
The Police were called in and immediately one of the two security guards was arrested. Based on intelligence and information received, the detectives went to a house in B Field Sophia where they conducted a search and found some personal items belonging to the owner of the business. There, another security guard was taken into custody.
The security guards were, however, interrogated during which one of them confessed to being part of the plot to rob the establishment.
Following leads, the detectives turned up at the home of the GDF sergeant at Vergenoegen, East Bank Essequibo (EBE), where a search was conducted in the house but nothing substantial was found.
Nevertheless, during a search in the yard, the detectives noticed a disturbed piece of land and decided to dig. It was then, a bucket was found buried, which, when checked, contained $15 million in $5000 notes and an additional $3 million in $1000 notes.
The bucket was reportedly wrapped in two black garbage bags while the money was neatly packed in transparent bags.
The operation was conducted by members of the Major Crimes Unit and members of the business community, especially the gold industry.
Following the successful operation, the Sergeant along with his wife were arrested. During interrogation, he told investigators that he was part of the initial plan to rob the gold establishment but he was not involved in committing the act.
The Sergeant also related that his wife was not aware of the robbery and as such, requested for her to be released.
The Police were subsequently told that the other two robbers are ex-military personnel. As information became available about their whereabouts, Police went to a village on the East Coast of Demerara (ECD) but no arrests were made.
Only last week, Police stated that Antonio Maraj, also called “Pluckin” or “Thuggy”; Jamal Hazel, and Dequan King, also called “Titus” or “Quanie”, are still on the run
They are wanted by the Police for questioning in connection with the multimillion-dollar gold heist committed on Wallison Enterprise of Gordon Street, Kitty. The three men wanted by Police in connection with this robbery were previously charged with a spate of armed robberies dating back to 2017.