Killer Devon Otto transferred to prison in the Netherlands

POSTED: 07/22/14 1:55 PM

St. Maarten – In the company of two guards, Stanley Gumbs-killer Devon Otto left St. Maarten on Sunday to spend the rest of his lengthy prison sentence in a prison in the Netherlands. Already in 2012 then Justice Minister Roland Duncan wanted to transfer Otto to the Netherlands because he is considered extremely dangerous. In the end however, the transfer took place at Otto’s own request, because he feels no longer safe in the Pointe Blanche prison.

In February 2010, the Common Court of Justice sentenced Otto on appeal to 30 years imprisonment – 6 more than de sentence from the Court in First Instance – for an attempt on the life of Luis Richardson, better known as Sticky, a robbery on three American tourists and the murder of Stanley Orlando Gumbs in a case of mistaken identity. Otto intended to kill Carlos Richardson, the hitman of drugs gang leader Omar Jones and Gumbs happened to look a lot like his target.

In prison, Otto was trouble from the get go. Once in 2009 he soiled himself and his cell on the day he had to appear in court. Prison staff had to clean him up and he appeared handcuffed and shackled before the judge.

After his conviction, Otto became unmanageable in Pointe Blanche. This went so far that the prison management decided to transfer him to the prison in Curacao. That did not end well either. In September 2011 he somehow got his hands on a Smith&Wesson revolver that he used to shoot Lysander Kani, who maintained close ties with the Koraal Specht Ariba drugs gang. A rivaling gang – Koraal Specht d’Abou – contracted Otto to kill Kani. Because the victim was seriously injured but did not die, the gangsters did not pay Otto for his services.

After the shooting the authorities in Curacao pressured St. Maarten to take back their prisoner. It was then that the justice minister at the time, Roland Duncan, attempted to send Otto to the Netherlands because he foresaw too much trouble with the man in Pointe Blanche.

The Dutch authorities however did not want Otto until all his legal options in the Antilles had been exhausted.

In July 2012, Otto was sentenced to 9 years for the prison shooting in Curacao. He will have to serve this sentence after he has completed his 30-year sentence for the Stanley Gumbs killing and his other crimes.

That was not the end of it. On July 20, 2013, Carnicio Warno and Nahshon Francis attacked Otto in the Pointe Blanche prison with improvised machetes, causing him severe injuries. Warno was later sentenced on appeal to 5 years imprisonment for the attack.

The Court in First Instance sentenced Nahshon Francis to 7 years in February of last year, but he never made it to his appeal hearing. In March of this year, Francis escaped from the prison and he was shot to death by the police in Philipsburg.

Francis is however the man who had a clear mind about the reason he attacked Otto. “I just decided to go after Otto; I had had it with him. This was something I had planned. Since Otto had sent somebody to slap me, I decided I was not gonna put up with it so I made a machete, especially for Otto,” he said last year to detectives. “When I saw Otto I decided to react. What I mean by that is that I wanted to get rid of him, I wanted to chop him up, hurt him, even kill him, whatever. With Otto, you can make no jokes; he is a very dangerous guy. I have even dreamed about what I was going to do with Otto before all this happened. It was either Otto or me who was going to die.”

In the end, it was not Otto, but Francis who died, be it in circumstances that were beyond his imagination. After all that transpired, the “dangerous” Otto felt no longer safe in Pointe Blanche and asked for a transfer. His attorney Shaira Bommel said yesterday that she does not know yet to which prison in the Netherlands her client has been transferred.



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