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Daughter’s boyfriend jailed for 16 years

first_imgNonpareil pensioner’s murder…taxi driver freed for time servedTwo years after two teenaged girls were charged with murdering their father, Roger Manikram at Nonpareil, East Coast Demerara (ECD), their alleged accomplices – Veeram Dias, the boyfriend of one of the sisters; and taxi driver Devon Brown both admitted to their crimes at the opening of the Demerara Criminal Assizes on Tuesday. The girls, Nalinie Manikam and her sister Alicia Manikam did not appear at the proceedings but they remain on remand pending the outcome of their matter.Veeram Dias was sentenced to 16 years’ imprisonmentDias, 23, pleaded guilty to manslaughter and was sentenced to serve 16 years in prison while Brown, who pled guilty to being an accessory after the fact, knowing that Dias and others committed the gruesome act, was released after having served two years on remand. The sentences were handed down by Justice Sandhill Kissoon, who considered the facts presented by Prosecutor Mandell Moore. The court heard that Dias bashed in Roger Manikram’s head with an axe and placed the man’s body into Brown’s car before later dumping the 64-year-old’s body at Coldingen Railway Embankment, ECD, on April 2, 2016.However, Dias’ Attorney, Latchmi Rahamat in her plea of mitigation highlighted that there were several accompanying circumstances which motivated her client to commit the crime. Having accepted the prosecution’s facts, the court was told that the admitted killer was in a relationship with the deceased man’s daughter.Attorney Rahamat observed that her client was only 21 years old at the time, noting that he was a first-time offender. She also noted that her client has neverFreed: Devon Brownopted to waste judicial time as he has always accepted that “his actions did result in the death of the deceased”. She described Dias as a model prisoner since he has not had any brushes with the law since being incarcerated. The Attorney also submitted legal arguments to support her case, even citing a ruling by Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) which described Camp Street jail as one of the most de-humanising facilities in the region.The attorney further claimed that her client almost lost his life in the 2016 Camp Street prison fire. While pleading for mercy, she added that Dias is now active in Bible studies and spends much time reading.In a brief address in which some emotion was shown, Dias indicated that he is forever sorry for his actions. “Not a day goes by that I don’t regret what I have done. I don’t know how many times to say sorry,” the admitted killer pointed out.Meanwhile, Dexter Todd, attorney from Dias’ accomplice, Devon Brown, also made an impassioned plea to the court, where he detailed the “rough life” his client had with losing many of his loved ones. Noting that Brown, a father of two, was only 24 when he committed his crime, Todd claimed that all his client did was respond to a call from his friend to assist him on the day in question.The court heard that Brown migrated to St Lucia when he was two years old and that his father and brother died over time and that his mother passed away whilst he was behind bars. Todd noted that Brown re-migrated to Guyana and settled at Crane, West Coast Demerara and had interacted with Dias and the two became friends. Brown supposedly had not known that there was a murder when he was called to transport Dias. Todd claimed that his client only knew what he did was against law after he was arrested.Justice Kissoon sentenced Brown to two years imprisonment. In computing Dias’ sentence, he started at a base of 30 years, deducted eight years for guilty plea, five years for his lawyer’s mitigating plea and one year for having shown remorse. This meant that the court’s sentence was 16 years. However, the court was ordered to deduct the time the defendant spent on remand awaiting trial.Meanwhile, Nalinie Manikam is being represented by attorney Charrandass Persaud while her sister Alicia Manikam is represented by Shellon Boyce. Both attorneys were present at the sentencing of Dias and his accomplice, Brown.According to reports, when the man’s body was found, it was claimed that the man might have been killed during a robbery. However, as investigations continued, Police ranks reportedly found a piece of rope at the Non Pariel home of the man, which appeared to have been a part of the rope that had been used to tie the deceased man. (Shemuel Fanfair)last_img read more