Omar Jones and Carlos Richardson fight life sentences – Seven gang members in court for Vesuvius-appeal today

POSTED: 03/6/13 11:46 AM

St. Maarten – Today the seven suspects in the Vesuvius-investigation appear in the Common Court of Justice for a pro forma hearing. At stake are the life sentences of gang leader Omar Jones and his hit man Carlos Richardson and the milder sentences for the five other gang members. The court session takes place at the Belair Community Center in Cay Hill for security reasons.

The attorneys for the seven defendants get the opportunity to submit requests for further investigation and for hearing witnesses. The defendants will appear one at a time in court, starting at 9 a.m. with Charles Edmond “Duduks” Fleming who is currently serving a 5-year sentence for membership of a criminal organization, firearm possession and involvement in the preparation of the attempted murder of Omax Bye and Kennedy Fergus on April 20, 2011.

The court has scheduled half an hour for each of the defendants, though the main suspects, Omar Jones and Carlos Richardson will appear in court together at 11 a.m. and there are no hearing planned for the rest of the morning.

After Fleming, Ekron Sylvan Collin Morgan will be in court. He is serving 8 years as an accomplice in the murder of Hector Miguel Arrindell on May 25, 2011. Like all other defendants, he is also accused of membership of a criminal organization and of firearm possession.

After Morgan, at 10 a.m. it’s the turn for Erno Desmond Wycliff Labega who is serving 6 years for his involvement in the preparations for the attempted murder of Omax Bye and Kennedy Fergus.

After Labega, Doniel Darryl Thomas is up. He is serving seven years for the same charges as Labega, plus firearm possession.

At 11 a.m. gang leader Omar Jones and his hit man Carlos Richardson appear in court together. Both were sentenced to life imprisonment for the attempted murder of Omax Bye and Kennedy Fergus and for the murder of Hector Miguel and Rodolfo Arrindell, Erica Lake and Kevin Gumbs. Among the charges is also the attempted manslaughter on a woman who happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time when the murderous gang leader and his hit man opened fire on Lake and Gumbs. Jones also had an impressive if not disquieting stock of firearms at his disposal: two revolvers, a semi-automatic rifle, two hunting rifles and a Springfield Armory rifle.

After the lunch break it is the turn for the odd man out in this illustrious company: Andrew Davis. The 31-year-old Jamaican, who portrayed himself as a confidante of gang leader Omar Jones, is serving a 6-year sentence for his involvement in preparations for the attempted murder of Omax Bye, membership of a criminal organization and firearm possession.

Davis is, however, a lone ranger in this story. Based on his statements, investigators managed to nail Jones and Richardson.

When Jones had the last word during the trial in October of last year, he had this to say about Davis:  “He is a vicious and coldblooded liar. He cannot even tell you in which country I got married or what my nickname is. And he was my confidante and he advised me? I have an HBO-education; I studied business management and mathematics. He has no education at all, and I never wished harm to anybody.”

That things between the gang leader and his self-proclaimed confidante were not well appeared during all court hearings, whereby Davis was always kept apart from the other defendants. After their convictions in November of last year, six gang members went to Pointe Blanche and Davis was sent for his own safety to the House of Detention in Simpson Bay.

In February, Davis was nevertheless attacked and stabbed nine times. He survived the attack and spent several days in hospital. Four suspects were arrested in the House of Detention and interrogated about the attack but so far no further details about this investigation have been released.

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