Anil Sancharra & Vinod Gopaul recharged for Isaiah Henry’s murder

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Vinod Gopaul and Anil Sancharra [Guyana Chronicle photos]
Anil Sancharra, 33, and Vinod Gopaul, 34, were today recharged with the murder of 16-year-old Isaiah Henry – after the charges were discharged last month by Magistrate Peter Hugh.

Police said that the matter was heard via Zoom at Fort Wellington Magistrate’s Court.

Sancharra was not required to plea whereas Gopaul was not present.

The matter is adjourned to the August 10 at the Blairmont Magistrate’s Court when the charge is expected to be read to Gopaul.

Last month, Magistrate Hugh discharged the murder charges against the duo.

In discharging the charges, Magistrate Hugh agreed with the submissions by defence attorney Dexter Todd who argued that the State has not produced any admissible evidence of murder against the duo.

Even though the charges were discharged, Sancharra and Gopaul remained in custody pending the preliminary inquiry into the murder of Isaiah’s cousin, 19-year-old Joel which is expected to begin on August 10. The duo was also charged with his murder.

The Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) had said that it would have written to the Magistrate requesting the documents taken at the Preliminary Inquiry (Pl) in the matter of The Police vs. Vinod Gopaul and Anil Sancharia for the offence of murder of Isaiah Henry.

The DPP said it needed to ascertain why the accused were discharged and take appropriate action.

Meanwhile, in addition to them, 19-year-old Akash Singh, called “Monkey,” of Zeelugt, East Bank Essequibo (EBE) was charged with the murder of Isaiah.

Singh, who had confessed to the crime and had implicated the others, was separately charged with the murder of Isaiah while the other two accused were charged jointly for both murders.

On September 6, 2020 the badly mutilated bodies of Isaiah and Joel were found in the backlands of Cotton Tree, West Coast Berbice – almost two days after they had left their Number Three Village, WCB home to pick coconuts.

The murders of the Henry cousins had sparked protests across several villages along the West Coast Berbice corridor, where commuters were beaten and robbed. With roads blocked, some vehicles were also torched.

Then days later, on September 9, 17-year-old Haresh Singh was found murdered at the Number Three Village backlands. It is suspected that his death was in retaliation for the murders of Isaiah and Joel, since he is related to one of the persons initially held by the Police for the cousins’ murders.

According to the confession from Singh, the Henry cousins’ murders stemmed from a destroyed ganja farm in the West Berbice backlands.