A miner was today remanded to prison by Chief Magistrate Ann McLennan when he appeared before her charged with the illegal possession of a firearm along with matching ammunition.
Don Fraser, 26, a miner and dredge owner of Lot 53 Third Avenue, Bartica denied the allegations which stated that on February 11 at Honey Camp, Issano Backdam, Middle Mazaruni, he had in his possession one single barrel, 12 gauge shotgun and two matching rounds of ammunition.
According to Police Prosecutor Deniro Jones, on the day in question, Police acting on information received went to the accused’s mining camp and conducted a search. He related that the Police did not find anything; however, they received further information, which led them to conduct a search of a nearby trail just outside of the mining camp.
During the search, the weapons were found in a clump of bushes beneath a wood plank and the accused reportedly admitted to using it for hunting purposes. The Prosecutor objected to bail based on the seriousness of the offense.
However, Fraser’s Attorney Latchmie Rahamat, stated that her client has an unblemished record. She stated that Fraser is a licensed firearm holder, and on the day of the search, he showed the Officers both the firearm and license. She further explained that after they found nothing, the officers left and went to an area outside of the camp where they conducted a search of a trail that is usually used by a number of persons. She stated that her client never left his camp and there are two witnesses willing to confirm such.
According to the lawyer, the Police returned shortly after and forced her client to accept ownership of the weapon but he refused. The lawyer alleged that the accused was also detained far beyond the 72-hour detention period.
She told the Court that the Police also confiscated her client’s firearm as well as the license.
The lawyer disclosed that she had contacted the Commander who informed her that Fraser would be released and that he would not be charged, however, contrary to that information, he was brought before the Court. On these grounds, she made an application for bail which was denied.
Fraser was remanded and the matter was transferred to the Bartica Magistrate’s Court for February 25.