Ex-soldier accused of raping woman at army base freed

Winston Haynes, the ex-soldier who was charged in March 2017, with raping a young woman at Base Camp Stephenson, Timehri, East Bank Demerara (EBD) was found not guilty on Monday after Justice Simone Morris-Ramlall upheld a no-case submission made on his behalf.

Haynes, also known as ‘Carlos,’ was accused of raping the 21-year-old woman in January 2017. The indictment against him had alleged that on January 27, 2017, in the county of Demerara, he engaged in sexual penetration with the woman without her consent.

When Haynes’s trial continued on Monday at the Demerara Sexual Offences Court, his lawyer, Ravindra Mohabir made a no-case submission in which he argued that there was not sufficient evidence to prove the elements of the offence for which his client is charged.

Agreeing with the lawyer’s arguments, the trial Judge upheld the no-case submission and directed the 12-member jury to return a formal verdict of not guilty. As such, Haynes, who had been out on $600,000 bail, was discharged and informed that he was free to go.

It was alleged that the young woman was taken to the Guyana Defence Force (GDF) base in an army vehicle and then escorted to a room where she was asexually assaulted. Following the allegations, a GDF Board of Inquiry (BoI) took the decision to dismiss Haynes.