WCB teens’ murders
President Dr Irfaan Ali has related that the Caricom Regional Security System (RSS), which was in Guyana to assist with the investigation of the murders of Joel and Isaiah Henry and Haresh Singh, has recommended additional work to be done.
The five-member team, which was led by an Assistant Commissioner of Police and comprised officials from countries within the Regional Investigative Management Systems (RIMS), was in Guyana for one week and departed on October 6. The team has since completed its report and handed it over to the Guyana Police Force (GPF).
The President, on the sidelines of an event at the Arthur Chung Conference Centre (ACCC), told reporters that while he has not yet seen the report, he was briefed on the contents.
“I have been briefed on the content of it and what I have been told is that the RSS did some work, they recommended some additional work to be done but in total, they were satisfied with the work the local Police have done,” President Ali said.
The findings of the RSS investigation have not been released to the public.
When contacted on Tuesday last for a comment on the RSS report, Crime Chief Wendell Blanhum said he did not have any comments. He, however, stated that Police are still pursuing various leads. With respect to the results of the DNA sent to St Lucia, the police are still awaiting its return.
During a recent interview with Guyana Times, President Ali noted: “The RSS team came with a specific mandate to support the Guyana Police Force. I was advised that they have made progress and that they’ve assisted the Guyana Police Force in some technical areas… I’m confident that the work they would have done, along with the work the Guyana Police Force continues to do, would bring justice and would see the perpetrators of these crimes brought to justice.”
According to the Head of State, the involvement of the RSS, and the team’s recent visit, is reflective of Government’s commitment to ensuring justice for the three teenagers. The President further pointed out that there is more than one team working full-time on these investigations and his Government is lending the necessary support.
“I know for sure that they are working on these cases every day, and I know that wherever they require resources and they have reached out to Government, we’ve been assisting in putting together those resources to ensure that they have all the tools at their disposal to bring these persons to justice,” Ali stated.
Isaiah, 16, and Joel, 19, left their Number Three Village, West Coast Demerara (WCB) home to pick coconuts, but two days later, on September 6, 2020, their butchered bodies were found in the backlands. Then on September 9, 2020, 17-year-old Singh was found murdered at the Number Three Village backlands. It is suspected that his death was in retaliation for the murders of the Henry cousins, since he is related to one of the persons initially held by the police.
While several persons were arrested for the murder of the Henry teens and later released, to date no arrest has been made in relation to Singh’s murder.
Police had explained that the location where the bodies of the Henry boys were found was not the primary crime scene, that is, it is not the location where the young men were killed.
Meanwhile, the Argentine Team of Forensic Anthropology, the world’s foremost agency in forensic anthropology which was expected to arrive in Guyana to support the Police Force in its probe into the murders of the three teenagers, has suffered a setback due to the high number of COVID-19 cases in that country.
The team was due in Guyana two weeks ago to commence their investigations but with the high cases of the novel coronavirus in that country, it is unclear when the team will arrive. Presently, Argentina has over one million COVID-19 cases with an estimated 27,000 deaths.
According to a well-placed source, once the team arrives in Guyana, their main priority is to comb the areas where the mutilated bodies of the teens were discovered for any forensic evidence.