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Large crowd at AK-47 gang victim's funeral

A large crowd turned out yesterday for the funeral of the mother slain when a gang of masked men armed with high-powered AK-47 assault rifles attacked and robbed two families last month at Mon Desir, Canal Number Two, West Bank Demerara.

FUNERAL SERVICE: relatives and others at the burial yesterday of slain robbery victim, Kowsilla Mahadeo.

One of the bandits drowned trying to escape after the gang of more than a dozen men attacked on the night of October 24, but the others were still at large up to yesterday as residents, family and friends turned out in their numbers for the funeral of Kowsilla Mahadeo, 56.

She was buried at New Anglet also in Canal Number Two Polder shortly after 16:00 h.

AK-47 rifle

The funeral service was extremely sad for Kowsilla's husband Jagoonauth Mahadeo and her son Churman, who survived the attack by the AK-47 gang.

The two collapsed several times during the funeral service and had to be held by relatives while bhajans (Hindu religious songs) and hymns were being sung.

Kowsilla was hospitalised for days in the Intensive Care Unit of the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation (GPHC) before she succumbed to her wounds, barely conscious.

She was shot in the chest, thigh and ankle after the bandits demanded more money and jewellery.

Her husband, Jagoonauth, 60, was shot on his left arm and Churman, 29, a taxi driver, was struck several blows.

The father said Churman returned home about 22:00 h and, after driving his car into the yard, was about to lock the gate when he was confronted by the attackers.

Shots were fired at the car and he was taken to the house and told to tell his mother, who was asleep in the bottom flat, to open the door for Police.

But she did not obey the command after Churman screamed and she realised they were under attack.

The gunmen kicked open the door, beat the husband and shot his wife while their son's four-year-old daughter and his wife, Sunita Lakraj, 30, hid under a bed.

The robbers ransacked the premises and stole money and jewellery in the 30 minutes they terrorized the family.

Other families were also terrorized in the gunmen's rampage.

Guns used by the gang, have been tied to the assassination of Agriculture Minister Satyadeow Sawh in April this year, Police reported.

The AK-47 rifle found strapped to the body of one of the men, who was found dead in a canal two days after the robbery, was one of the 30 reported missing from the Camp Ayanganna, Georgetown headquarters of the Guyana Defence Force (GDF) earlier this year, Police reported.

The links between the gang which killed Minister Sawh, two of his siblings and a security guard, and the gang came from ballistics tests on shells found after the Mon Desir attack, Police said.

Saturday, November 04, 2006