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PAPER SHORTS MURDER: Benn suggest cameras were down for maintenance, GPF says ‘erroneous’

The Guyana Police Force has come out swinging at reports carried in sections of the media that suggest the cameras located on Main Street in close proximity to Palm Court were not operable at the time that Ricardo Fagundes was executed.

The sudden voice of the Guyana Police Force comes as and contradicts comments which were made by his subject minister Robeson Benn who in an exclusive interview with BIG Smith News Watch suggested that the cameras were down for maintenance.

Minister Benn was grilled extensively by this publication Saturday on the sidelines of an engagement which he had in Mocha.

“Minister I am trying to get from you clearly, if you received any information in respect to why that camera might not have been working,” Minister Benn then said, “No, no specific information, with respect to that, this is normal repair and maintenance issue I believe.” Benn was asked and responded after initially skirting around the issue.

But it was the Guyana Police Force who came out with a statement on Tuesday afternoon that not only embarrasses the force and its ability to properly brief the nation on matters of national interests, but their statement also rubbished the claims by their subject minister that the cameras might have been down for maintenance.

“The Guyana Police Force is responding to erroneous reports carried in some sections of the media, without confirmation being sought from the Police Force, to the effect that the Government-installed CCTV cameras in a section of Georgetown were not functioning at the time of the murder of Ricardo Fagundes. The Police Force emphatically states that investigators of the Major Crimes Unit have retrieved footage from one of the cameras mounted in the vicinity of the crime scene and this is being enhanced for evidential purposes.” The police statement stated in part.

Following a BIG Smith News Watch Report on Tuesday Following a BIG Smith News Watch Report on Tuesday where Minister Benn was quoted speaking about the camera and suggesting that they were down for maintenance, sources familiar with the operations of the National Data Management System and Safe City Program , suggested that the cameras were indeed working.

We were told that it was those said cameras that were able to pick up the images of the car that was parked on the eastern carriage way of main street and which is suspected to have been the getaway car.

We were told that whoever might have carried out the attack on Fagundes, might have proper knowledge and intelligence on the workings of the cameras and its exact coverage area as they were able to carry out their acts in a manner that completely evaded the lens of the State operated cameras.

The cameras we were told is suppose to me under 24 hours monitoring but is not done at the moment and according to our source, this has to do with some logistical issues as well as human resources and training.

Fagundes was executed on March 21, 2021 as he exited Palm Court where he and friends including convicted drug trafficker Shaheed Roger Khan.

There were reports in sections of the media that Khan might have been the intended target if the attack.

Khan himself came out at the funeral of Fagundes who he called his son, related that he felt the bullets were for him and said the attack was one on his home.

He called on the police to conduct a proper investigation into the crime and not allow themselves to become compromised and to also safeguard the investigation from such a fate.

After Khan’s message to the police force which wen viral, the force scrambled to issue a statement in an apparent move to appease Khan.

That statement sent a tone to Khan that said ‘Not to worry chief, we are investigating your matter’