Crown’s robbery witness struggles with evidence

| 08/10/2013

(CNS): Marlon Dillon, a co-conspirator and key witness for the crown against the four men alleged to have robbed local cable company WestStar Ltd back in May 2012, took the stand in Grand Court Monday, as the trial of Andre Burton, David Tamassa, George Mignot and Ryan Edwards entered its second week. Visiting judge, Justice Alastair Malcolm, heard Dillon's claim that when he got to Tamassa's house in West Bay, he was confronted with the idea to rob the television company by the defendants. Dillon claimed his only involvement in the heist was transporting the men to and from Schoolhouse Road in George Town. Throughout the day's proceedings, Dillon's evidence became increasingly inconsistent.

The witness kept repeating statements incorrectly, as though he had forgotten which of the defendants had told him the details of the robbery.

The court heard Dillon say that when the accused approached him with the idea of the robbery, he told them he did not wish to have any involvement. Dillon claims that Tamassa had told him that a friend of his, named Jason, was working inside the company as a clerk and would open his till quickly before hiding and that the men should not leave any money in his cash drawer.

Dillon says that the men were advised to enter the building between 3 and 3:30pm, before the armoured truck arrived to collect the daily earnings.

The crown's witness said that he was told by the men that he was to remain in the parking lot on Schoolhouse Road for them to return in the getaway vehicle with Beau Clarke. He was also told that, should he fail to do so, he "knows the drill". Dillon said that he did not want to leave his friends stranded and had felt threatened by what was said to him, so he waited anxiously for their return.

During cross examination, Dillon revealed to the court that he and his wife had met with three police officers investigating the case who made promises relating to a shorter prison sentence and that he would be jailed in another jurisdiction. It became apparent to the defence team that no records that this meeting had ever taken place had been disclosed.

Deputy Director of Public Prosecutions Trevor Ward, QC, indicated to the defence team that all documents and notes concerning the case had been given to them but he would seek to make additional inquiries.

David Tamassa, George Mignot and Andre Burton have all denied being the robbers and suggest that Dillon is deliberately lying and implicating them in the robbery. In an alleged confession to the police about his part in the hold-up, Ryan Edwards told the police the robbers were not his co-defendants.

As Dillon struggled with his evidence, the four accused men in the dock listened intently as the crown witness faltered under cross-examination.

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