Hefty bail for men accused of stealing sardines, coconut milk from employer

Three men were released on $250,000 bail each on Friday after denying allegations of breaking into the bond of their former workplace, Memorex Enterprise, and carting off over $7.5M worth in items.

Milton Barnwell, a 52-year-old security guard of New Amsterdam Berbice; Prakash Hemchand, 28, of Queenstown Skeldon and Mark Balprashad, a 29-year-old driver of Second Street, Corentyne Berbice all appeared before City Magistrate Leron Daly.

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The men pleaded not guilty to the charge, which alleged that between April 1 and August 20, 2021 at Durban Street, Lodge they broke and enter the bond and stole 379 cases of sardines, 156 cases of mackerel, 200 cases of coconut milk, 25 bottles of hand sanitizers and other items totaling $7,541,700, property of Anthony Ameerally.

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According to reports, during the period in question, the men were employed by Memorex Enterprise. Barnwell, who was a security guard, resided at the bond to provide 24-hour security.

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It is alleged that on August 20, the victim made checks at the bond and discovered a large number of his stocks missing. A report was made to the police and Barnwell was arrested. It is alleged that under caution, he confessed to the crime and gave the names of Hemchand and Balprashad as his accomplice.

A further investigation was conducted by the police and an eyewitness admitted to seeing the trio removing the items from the bond.

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Magistrate Daly ordered the men to lodge their passports at the court and report every Monday to the East La Penitence police station.

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The Magistrate released them on $250,000 bail each and adjourned the case to September 24, 2021.

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