November 26 2019
A La Grange, West Bank Demerara resident was yesterday granted his release on $200,000 bail after he denied a charge of attempting to export over $7 million in raw gold without a licence.
Vibert Marks, of Lot 95 Independence Street, La Grange, appeared before Chief Magistrate Ann McLennan and pleaded not guilty to the charge.
It is alleged that on November 18th, at the Cheddi Jagan International Airport, Timehri while not being a producer and without an export licence, he was found in possession of raw gold, weighing 974.13 grammes, valued $7,332,416.
Police prosecutor Gordon Mansfield told the court that during a check, a darkish object was found in the corner of Marks’ suitcase. Marks had informed that he had 80 ounces of gold, however, upon further search, it was revealed that it was more than the amount mentioned.
Marks was represented by attorney Glenn Hanoman, who told the court that his client had been detained by the Special Organised Crime Unit (SOCU). Additionally, in his application for bail, he highlighted the fact that the alleged crime committed attracts a fine as a penalty. He also told the magistrate that Marks would lodge his passport to SOCU if granted bail.
Mansfield, however, objected to Marks being released on bail. He noted that Marks, although a Guyanese by birth, is also a permanent US resident. He also mentioned that Marks was to be separately charged today with engaging in a corrupt transaction and he is also being investigated for money laundering.
However, the magistrate granted Marks bail with the condition that he reports to the SOCU office every day at 8 am. He is due to return to court today.