Former Guyana Defence Force (GDF) Rear Admiral Gary Best was on Thursday, December 03, 2020, freed of the charge which alleged that he caused the death of former national cyclist Jude Bentley in an accident earlier this year. The charge was dismissed by City Magistrate Rondel Weever who upheld a no-case submission made by Best’s lawyers Nigel Hughes, Ronald Daniels, and Sophia Findlay.
Magistrate Weever ruled that the prosecution failed to establish the elements of the offence, and thereby dismissed the matter. It was alleged that on February 08, 2020, at Clive Lloyd Drive, East Coast Demerara, Best drove motor car PRR 812, in a manner dangerous to the public, causing the death of Bentley. He was released on $500,000 bail after denying the charge.
He was also charged with driving under the influence. He also denied this charge and was released on self-bail with instructions to report to Police Traffic Headquarters until the completion of his trial. The charge for driving under the influence is still pending in the traffic court.
Reacting to the dismissal, Best told reporters that he was happy at the outcome of the matter. He said that he is relieved as it has now been proven that he did not cause the death of the former national cyclist and that he was not driving dangerously. Reports are that Bentley, 41, was killed on the Rupert Craig Highway in the vicinity of the Russian Embassy as he was heading east along the stretch of road. Reports are that Bentley was hit from behind and dragged several feet by the Land Cruiser which was being driven by Best.
At the time of the accident, Police had said that Best was under the influence of alcohol. Best is an Executive Member of the PNC/R and a former Presidential Advisor under the APNU/AFC Government.