‘Numbers man’ murder trial

| 06/08/2014

(CNS): The crown’s case against Raziel Omar Jeffers, who is on trial for the murder of a ‘numbers man’ in Maliwinas Way in March 2010, is that he masterminded the robbery of Marcos Mauricio Duran, chose his ‘soldiers’, armed them with lethal weapons and during the course of the planned stick-up, the victim was shot and killed. On Tuesday Director of Public Prosecutions Cheryll Richards, QC, told the one man and eleven women on the jury that there was no suggestion that Jeffers actually delivered the fatal shot or was present when the fatal shot was fired or that his death was intended but that Duran’s death was a “probably consequence” of the nature of the crime. 

According to the crown, Jeffers, together with Jordan Manderson, murdered Duran outside the apartment off North West Point Road, West Bay, on 11 March 2010, shortly after 7:20 in the evening. The jury can also consider an alternative charge of manslaughter for Jeffers.

The jury was told that they will hear evidence that just before the death of Duran, Jeffers watched and waited for his arrival, that he informed his ‘soldiers’ – younger members of his gang – when he reached the apartment of a woman to whom he was in the habit of selling illegal lottery ‘numbers’ to. He then informed them when Duran left so that they could carry out the armed robbery. Although there is no evidence that they intended to harm the victim, during the hold-up Duran was fatally shot in the head and once in the hand. Manderson was shot in the leg during the incident.

Richards explained to the jury that because of the nature of the plan and the use of lethal weapons that death or serious injury was a likely scenario. If a person points a loaded weapon at another person they must have intended to use it, she argued.

The DPP also said that Jeffers tried to cover up the crime by helping to clean up the getaway car and that he told his girlfriend to tell a key witness, the woman who was buying the numbers from Duran, to say that members of the rival Logwood gang had carried out the crime.

Richards said that Jeffers told his girlfriend in advance about the planned robbery of the ‘numbers man’. Immediately afterwards, he called her and sounded “panicky” as he asked her to pick him up. At that time he told her that he did not know what had happened but said that “the poor numbers man is dead”.

The jury also heard from the first two witnesses. A neighbour who heard the gunshots that night and called 911 said he saw "a shadow" of a person moving behind the apartments when he arrived one or two minutes later.

The first police officer at the scene said that he looked at Duran's wallet to find identification and found CI$225 and US$40 was still inside.

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