Charles Leonard, 49, also called “Poon” of White Mile, Port Kaituma, North West District (NWD), Region One (Barima Waini), was on Monday sentenced to seven years in prison for killing his friend who he had accused of eating his wild meat and cassava bread back in 2017.
During a virtual hearing via Zoom, High Court Judge Brassington Reynolds levied the sentence on Charles, a cash crop farmer, for the crime.
The charge had stated that between October 5 and October 6, 2017, at Five Mile Port Kaituma, Leonard unlawfully killed Romel Gouveia, also called “White Boy”.
The accused had appeared before Magistrate Ann McLennan on October 11, 2017, and was not required to plead to the indictable charge.
Nevertheless, upon his first appearance last week in the High Court, he had confessed to the crime, and the lesser count of manslaughter was entered on his behalf.
It was reported that the now dead man and the suspect lived in the same house, and on October 5, 2017 the two men had a misunderstanding over food.
It is alleged that Leonard, who was under the influence of alcohol, saw the now dead man in the kitchen eating his food and this angered him. In retaliation, the suspect armed himself with a piece of wood and dealt one blow to the victim’s head.
After committing the act, he fled the scene, and Gouveia was later discovered by Leonard’s wife, who raised an alarm.
The man was picked up and taken to the Port Kaituma Hospital, where he was pronounced dead on arrival. The suspect was later arrested and charged.
During the trial, the State was represented by Prosecutors Teriq Mohammed and Tyra Bakker while Leonard was represented by Attorney-at-Law Siand Dhurjon.
Judge Reynolds sentenced Leonard to 12 years’ imprisonment. From the 12 years, he deducted 1/3 for the time he spent in pre-trial custody and two years for his early guilty plea, hence arriving at seven years.