Investigators of the Royal Barbados Police Force need an “unfettered chance” to find the other suspects connected to the Kentucky Fried Chicken (Barbados) Limited robbery, Magistrate Douglas Frederick today said as he remanded two men charged with the offence to Her Majesty’s Prison Dodds for the next 28-days.
Junior supervisor at the fast food franchise Alvin George Chung, 36, of Searles Plantation, Christ Church and Noel Lionel Taylor, 42, of Galloway Lane, Waterford, St Michael will be housed at the St Philip jail until February 12.
The duo is charged with robbing Llewelun Walthrust, on December 31, 2019, of BDS$69, 881.68 and US$1,259.50 belonging to the KFC. Police say the robbery took place at KFC’s corporate offices located on Hincks Street, St Micheal around 10:40 a.m. The charge is indictable and as such the accused could not enter pleas.
Sergeant Krishna Graham objected to bail on the grounds that police were still on the hunt for two other persons and there were fears that the two men would interfere with investigations if released at this time.
The prosecutor also submitted that society needed protection from the accused as she informed Magistrate Frederick that Taylor is alleged to have committed the crime while on bail for a pending matter.
But in arguing for her client’s pretrial liberty, attorney-at-law Angela Mitchell-Gittens while conceding that Taylor was on bail said the matter was two years old. The lawyer added that her client reported for his court hearings whenever he was required to do so. She urged the court not use the pending charge “to his detriment” given the time span between the two allegations.
Regarding the fact that police were still searching for other suspects Mitchell-Gittens stated that the objection had a “shelf life”. She also revealed that Taylor had been in police custody for the past 13 days describing it as “an inordinate” amount of time for a person to be held.
“I do not know how it will benefit Taylor . . . the fact that these persons are being sought should not affect his right to his liberty.”
“The protection of society is a serious matter but persons are charged, not convicted . . . . At this stage what they have is an allegation. Even though the charges are serious they are not so serious that bail can’t be extended even further,” Mitchell-Gittens submitted.
Kaviar Callendar is legal counsel for Chung. He echoed the senior lawyer’s arguments for bail but went on to inform the court that his client was before the District ‘A’ Magistrates’ Court with a clean slate as he was not known to any court in the jurisdiction.
Callendar noted that the objections aimed at protecting society were “premature” at this stage as the public had “nothing to fear” from Chung given that the charge against him was at this time, a mere allegation. Urging the court to exercise its discretion in granting his client bail, Callendar informed the magistrate that Chung was a father of an eight-year-old and played an active role in his life. He however, admitted that the one “aggravating” feature was Chung was employed as a manager with KFC and given the complaint, would be out of a job.
Magistrate Frederick acknowledged the “good points” coming from both sides but also noted that police investigations were still active.
“We still have to give the police an unfettered chance at finding these people. But this [objection] has a shelf life. It will be difficult for you to get bail,” he said before remanding the two accused.