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Prison Services defend release of prisoners

The Guyana Prison Service is defending the release of some 65 prisoners who were released as part of special remissions. There is widespread criticism about the release of these persons since some were incarcerated for violent crimes. These include manslaughter, causing of death by dangerous driving, abduction, armed robbery, robbery, unlawful and malicious wounding, unlawful assault, bestiality, attempt to commit a felony, trafficking of illegal drugs including cannabis, cocaine and narcotics, possession of narcotics, unlawful possession of firearm, break and enter and larceny, affiliation arrears, damage to property,  breach of protection order, simple larceny, fraudulent conversion, escape from lawful custody, contempt of court and fraud.

The release of the persons has also seen calls for the release of the names of the persons.

On Tuesday, the prison service said that special remission which was granted under the Prison Act Chapter 11:01 was done so based on their time served, good behaviour and rehabilitation. The authorities said they also took into concern the covid-19 pandemic.

The prison authorities said too that time remaining for the sentences served by persons released were below three months for all cases considered, “the offences for which the special remission was granted were as follows: major- 5, serious- 9  and minor- 51,” the release read.

Additionally the prison authorities said these persons were selected based on the time served in prison as the release said they “are considered not likely to be of a risk to society.”