The prosecution demanded 14 years of imprisonment against Stevenson P. and one of the escaped suspects Sobiesky Parrondo yesterday, for teh November 10th murder of Gaston Ambroise Gumbs. The Fourt of First Instance will announce its verict on July 24th 2013. The trial lasted four hours due in part because Parrondo did not appear in court, and was tried in absentia. Judge Tamra Tijhuis fully questioned the suspect who was present, Stevenson P. According to the defendent, he went form French Quarter to the Casablanca brothel, to Philipsburg, Arch Road, Middle Region, French Quarter and then on to Marigot and Sandy Ground before returning to the barber shop near the Roundabout in Dutch Quarter. In the monring, the defendant met with Gaston Gumbs in French Quarter. Mr Gumbs asked Mr P. how he could get some drugs, and the defendant told him allegedly, that he did not know. Whenever the judge asked the defendant for details about whom he had met on his trek around the island and what the phone conversations were about what he had, P’s answers were evasive or vague. He used expressions like “I don’t remember exactly” and “I am not sure”. When the prosecutor Gonda van der Wulp laid out her case before the court a different story emerged. On the evening of Saturday, November 10th 2012 the fire brigade received a report about a fire at the Hope Estate at approx. 10:47 pm Firefighters found a body in the flames, that later, based on fingerprint evidence, turned out to be Gaston Gumbs. The next morning at 8a.m. the victims son Maradona filed a missing persons report. He told politce that his fahter was meeting two people near Guana Bay but that he had not returned from this meeting. An autopsy revealed that Gumbs had been seriously ill treated and that he had lost a lot of blood. He was killed with two shots to the neck with a semi-automatic pistol, probably a Glock. This case has been solved due to excellent detective work by the local police force,” Mr Van der Wulp stated. It was a tough case that was tackled by a small but determined team.” The team cooperated with the French gendarmerie and the French prosecutor’s office. The prosecutor said that financial trouble was the motive for the murder. Gumbs aka Brasi, sought contact with Stevensop P. for a drug deal involving 25 kilos of cocaine at $8.000 per kilo. Stevenson P. later stated to the police that he told Gumbs he did not have that kind of drugs. Later in the day the defendant involved Sobiesky P. In his scheme, he was to tell Gumbs that he had the drugs but that the deal had to go down on the Dutch side. Maradona Gumbs told the police that his father had loaned his car to Stevenson P. the reason why he had driven this father to Sucker Garden. Video footage obtained from the Cigar Lounge, at the corner of Guana Bay Road and Sucker Garden Road shows Gumbs sitting on a wall that evening. One of the witnesses that saw him there was none other than former Minister of Economic Affairs Frankie Meyers. When Gumbs did not return home Maradona went to his father’s house and searched it, according to the prosecutor. He found a black bag full of money. According to Sobiesky Parrondo;s attorney Mr Geert Hatmann he later gave that bag to three men who had come to the house. The Criminal Intelligence Dept. provided investigators with a vital clue, it identified the “Steve” with whom Gumbs had been Involved with on the day of his disappearance. as “Stevenson P, born January 19th in Dominica. When detectives serached for Stevenson P on Facebook, they found a buiness card on his page of a company called Witco. The phone number matched a number Gumbs contacted which was the last phone contact he would make. on Nomvemeber 10th 2013 at 7:32 p.m. This led investigators to Stevenson P and Mr P became a suspect in the murder. The prosecution also holds that both suspects were near the murder scene because both their phones sent signals to the same transmission mast in the vicinity. Both suspects have declared that they never lent their phones to others, but they have also denied being at the crime scene. The prosecution considers these latter statements to be false. The suspects arrived at around ten pm at the DP gast station in Dutch Quarter where Parrondo bought cigarettes and a lighter. Parrondo told investigators he did this at P’s request, both suspects are none smokers. WHen the men later travelled to Galsbay to burn Gumbs’ car, Stevenson P. reportedly told Parrondo, “If you talk about this with anyone I will know, and something bad will happen to your family”. THe prosecution further established, based on statements from Stevenso P. that the suspect had been robbed of 2 kilos of cocaine. This cocaine possibly belonged to Angelo Blijden a man from Curacao, prosecutor Van der Wulp stated. In the weeks prior to the Gumbs murder, Blijden had put Stevenson P, under pressure to make up for the loss of the cocaine. On his Facebook page, Stevenson P. lists Willemstad as his place of residence. The suspects did not give any insight to investigators in the roles they have played int the crime, though it seems clear that Parrondo made the agreement for the delivery of 25 kilos of cocaine. The victim was not an innocent bystander, but the prosecutor concluded that he did not deserve the manner in which he died. Attorney Bommel told the court that the client denies involvement in the murder in anh event. e says he had not been near Gumbs that eveneing. The witness statements do not match. Everybody has a different story. The attorney said that the victims son Maradona has quite a lot to explain and that he knows more thatn he pretends. She added that it is odd that the son went to his father’s house when he did not return and that he gave the bag with money he found to three men that stood in fornt of the house. Bommel also asked the court to exclude a statement from an anonymous caller from evidence, because it is not possible to establish the reliability of thse statements. SHe also contested the reliability of statements made by her client’s absent co-defendant. “The information that has been presented to the court is full of uncertainties. I contest that there is proof and ask the court to acquit my client.Geert Hatmann however noted that the presentation made by the public prosecutor was mostly correct. He pointed out that his client did not have a single role in the drug deal with Brasi. What has been established is that they have set fire to the body together, but there is not premeditation. They did this only two hours afterwards. I think the situation escalated beyond their control and that they panicked. That is manslaughter, not murder and my client is not an accomplice. Hatzmann asked the court for an acquittal of the murder or manslaughter charges. There is proof of burning the body and for firearm possession, two years is enough for that. Van der Wulp reponded that Parrondo had not given any insight in the role both menn had played and taht she therfore would stick to considering him as an accomplice In his last word STevendson P, a father of 11 children with six different mothers, told the court that he did not kill Gumbs and that he did not have a gun either. Photo from Bibi Shaw of suspect Photo of Geert Hatzmann Judit Roumou Story edited and taken mostly from daily rag, the Today.
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