British teen’s killers seeking to appeal death, life sentences

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L-R: Aaron Hing, Dominic Bernard, Staymon George

After being told by Justice Sandil Kissoon that he was unfit to dwell among society and then sentenced to death for murder, the man convicted of the killing of British teenager Dominic Bernard has issued a notice of appeal.

His partner in the crime, who was sentenced to life imprisonment after pleading guilty, has also issued a notice of appeal.

The body of 18-year-old Bernard, a British citizen, was discovered buried in a shallow grave in the backdam of Nurney, Corentyne, Berbice on November 5, 2015, several weeks after he arrived in Guyana and had gone missing.

Earlier this month, Aaron Hing, who was the godbrother of the now dead teenager, was found guilty of the gruesome murder and sentenced to death.

His accomplice, Staymon George, who had already pleaded guilty to the crime, received a life sentence for the teen’s murder in October.

Now, the duo has filed notices of appeal against their respective convictions.

Hing, in the notice, is contending that the trial was unfair and he also indicated his intention to appeal against the severity of the sentence.

George said he is appealing on the grounds that his guilty plea was not unequivocal and that it was as a result of pressure by his Attorney Ravindra Mohabir.

Reports are that Hing had told investigators that it was George who killed the British teen. He claimed that George had pushed the teenager into a grave, which they had dug prior, and then jumped in himself. The deceased and George started to scuffle during which he [George] took a hammer and hit the teenager in his head.

According to the statement, Bernard started to scream and George stuffed his mouth with a pair of socks and then they beat him until he stopped moving.

However, during the trial, Hing denied that he gave the police such a statement saying that it was a fabrication on the part of the police.

He said he did not kill Bernard but it was George who committed the act.

Hing told that court that it was George who lured Bernard to go the backdam to retrieve some guns that were reportedly buried there.

He said after George hit Bernard twice to his head with a hammer, he started to cry and was told by George if he told anyone he will harm him and his family.

The 18-year-old British teenager arrived in Guyana on the evening of October 14, 2015.

George, who is said to be a close friend of Hing, was the driver who transported Hing to the airport to collect Bernard.

After collecting the teen from the Cheddi Jagan International Airport (CJIA), they stopped at a location on Sheriff Street where they ate and drank a few beers. Bernard was never seen again.

The teen was scheduled to fly back to England on November 5, 2015, but after he went missing, his parents came to Guyana in search of answers.

A postmortem revealed that the British teen had sustained a fractured skull and also broken neck among other injuries.