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Duo who robbed, killed father of two sentenced to life in prison

The trial of pur who were jointly charged with the 2017 murder of clothes vendor Purcell Moore ended on Monday when they opted to plead guilty to the lesser offence of manslaughter. They admitted that on December 20, 2017, in the county of Demerara, they unlawfully killed Moore, 40, during the course or furtherance of a robbery.

As such, Justice Sandil Kissoon directed the jury to return a formal verdict of guilty in relation to the lesser count. Both 21 years of age, Dawson, and Persaud were each sentenced to life imprisonment with the possibility of parole after serving a minimum term of 15 years.

Justice Kissoon in his sentencing remarks said, “This callus crime and course of conduct displayed by the accused [Persaud and Dawson] must be addressed. Members of society ought to be free to move about …..whether in the precinct of the business community in downtown Georgetown, in their neighbourhood, or their home…”

According to the Judge, citizens must feel free to carry on with their business without the fear of being attacked and robbed of their property. On this note, the Judge said that the sentence of the court must not only “fit this bastardly act”, but also serve as a deterrent.

Moore, a father of two, had just returned to his homeland from French Guiana to celebrate the Christmas holidays with his family when he was shot and robbed of his gold chain and other jewellery by three men. He received two gunshot wounds- one to the head and another to the chest.

The now-dead man was attacked and robbed a short distance away from his parents’ Craig, East Bank Demerara home. He was picked up by his father and rushed to the Diamond Hospital where doctors pronounced him dead on arrival.

Dawson was represented by Attorney-at-law Adrian Thompson, while Persaud retained Attorney-at-law Damien DaSilva. The prosecution was represented by State Counsel Lisa Cave and State Counsel Mohamed Ali.