One of the men allegedly involved in the casino robbery in Debe on Saturday was remanded into custody when he appeared in court on four charges.
Elisha Lingchung, 23, a painter, of Edinburgh 500, Chaguanas pleaded not guilty on Tuesday in the San Fernando Magistrates Court.
The charges stemmed from an armed robbery at Instant Winner Member Club, at SS Erin Road, Debe, which went viral on social media as a hostage situation.
It turned out that no one was held hostage. Lingchung was arrested by police at Mohess Road, Debe, shortly after the robbery. He was charged with armed robbery by PC Crawford of the San Fernando Police Station.
It is alleged that on June 8, armed with a firearm together with other people he robbed employee Nicolette Jagroop of two remote controls valued $500, a $25 pack of Mt D’or cigarettes and a $20 cigarette lighter. He is alleged he also used personal violence during the incident. He is also accused of robbing Rajkumar Motee, a patron, of a $200 cellphone, a $20 bank card, a $50 identification card and a $500 driver’s permit. It is further alleged that he robbed another patron, Maya Gookhiedeen Lalla, of $1,000, a $500 driver’s permit, a $200 purse and a cellphone valued $500. The other charge alleged that he robbed employee Vidya Goorcharan of $58,354 which belonged to the casino.
In his bail application, attorney Ainsley Lucky said, “These charges have gained quite a lot of notoriety since the inception. The whole of Trinidad and Tobago know Debe came to a standstill when this was being investigated on Saturday.”
Magistrate Indar Jagroo, however, said he was unaware of the incident. Lucky said Lingchung, a father of two, had two previous convictions, but the charges are still bailable offences.
He said the accused has no passport and will be accountable for every court appearance.
“At this stage of the proceedings, he should not be held guilty of it, even though people in this society like to talk. This is talking society, nothing has started yet,” said Lucky. However, prosecutor Ramdath Phillip asked for an opportunity to have a fingerprint trace done to obtain the prisoner’s criminal record. The magistrate denied him bail and adjourned the matter to Thursday.