UG bomb threat suspect charged – Court appearance on February 11, 2019

 – Guyana Chronicle – 

Sheliza Jafferally (24)

— to make court appearance today

THE University of Guyana (UG) student, Sheliza Jafferally, arrested in relation to alleged bomb threats made at the university last week is expected to appear in the Georgetown Magistrates’ Court today,(February 11, 2019) to answer to the charge of misuse of a telecommunication device.

The charge comes under the Telecommunications Act of Guyana and states, that a person found guilty for false or dangerous telecommunications can be liable on summary conviction to up to $2M in fines and six months imprisonment.        

According to Article 71 (1) of the Act: “A person who, by means of a telecommunications network or a telecommunications service, willfully circulates or otherwise transmits any telecommunication that is false, deceptive or misleading, or that materially endangers the physical safety of any other person, shall be guilty of an offence and shall be liable on summary conviction to a fine of not less than $250,000 nor more than two million dollars and, to imprisonment for a term of not more than six months.”

On February 5 and 6, 2019, bomb threats were reportedly made to the university’s Turkeyen Campus, forcing the cancellation of classes. Classes are expected to resume today.

The Police Force, through its commissioner, deputy crime chief and a team of officers, met with members of the UG administration and days later arrested UG student, Sheliza Jafferally.

According to a source, based on the investigations conducted by the police, a telephone number belonging to the student is linked to the number from which the bomb threats allegedly were made to the university.

Jafferally, who goes by the nickname ‘Shelly’, is the niece of former People’s Progressive Party (PPP) Region Six Member of Parliament (MP) and current Region Five Campaign Manager Faizal Jafferally.

The university’s administration following the scares had shut its doors. The threats came even as a string of online threats directed at several city schools have been ongoing for weeks.

These threats were initially made against the School of the Nations, and resulted in the school’s director being shot in both arms while he was entering his home.

The threats to the university were taken seriously as students and staff evacuated campus, while a $1M reward has been offered, for anyone with information regarding the threats made to School of the Nations.

The Guyana Chronicle had reported last week that there were concerns about the rhetoric of Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo, expressing that there would be no business as usual while threatening to “ratchet up” the pressure on the government and the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) over the holding of early elections.

On the same day that Jagdeo made the threats, there was a bomb threat at the University of Guyana.
Asked to respond to this apparent coincidence on Thursday at his news conference, Jagdeo brushed aside the concerns saying that the “PPP was taking the high moral ground”.
He said that his party was not preaching violence or polarisation, “That is where we will always stand”.

According to an online news agency, the family of Jafferally noted that the young lady vehemently denies making the threat.

The family has hired an attorney to clear her name and believes that the public is too hasty to cast judgement on the young woman.

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  • guyaneseonline  On February 12, 2019 at 8:05 pm

    UG student in alleged bomb threat remanded to prison
    Demerara Waves – 11 Feb 2019

    The University of Guyana (UG) student, who allegedly issued bomb threats against that tertiary institution, was Monday refused bail on a charge under the Telecommunications Act.

    Sheliza “Dianne” Jafeerally, 25, of Cummings Lodge, Georgetown, and a Sales Consultant at Yello Media Group, pleaded not guilty to the offence that on Tuesday, February 5, 2019 by means of a public telecommunications system she caused anxiety to the students and staff at the University of Guyana by transmitting a false message knowing same to be false.

    Chief Magistrate Ann McLennan upheld the prosecutor’s objection to bail on grounds of tampering with the evidence and witnesses as well as other investigations against the young woman. The prosecutor also wants one week for four statements to be obtained.

    Jafeerally was refused bail on the grounds of public interest and causing public terror. She was remanded to prison until February 18 when she would appear in the Sparendaam Magistrates’ Court.

    Defence Lawyer Latchmie Rahamat lamented that her client was last Friday arrested and presented with a computer-generated printout of a telephone number similar to hers. Rahamat said the printout had no official stamp, title or heading that indicated it was obtained from a telecoms company. “My client had completely denied the allegation put to her by the police,” Rahamat said, adding that “she intends to vigorously defend herself”.

    Rahamat noted that although Jafeerally had been in police custody for more than 72 hours, she had not been told of any other offence or allegation. The lawyer rejected the prosecutor’s grounds for objecting to bail and she called for disclosure on what the pending investigation was about. “If there was another allegation, they were duty-bound to put same to her,” the lawyer said.

    Rahamat complained to the court that police swooped down on Jafeerally’s home and seized all her electronic devices as well as questioned a number of her friends, a number of whom sought legal advice.

    UG classes were called off last week after the institution received threats of bombs being planted there.

    Police said Jafeerally was picked up last week Friday based on telephone records and the persons with whom she was associated.

  • Trevor  On February 13, 2019 at 4:33 pm

    Indo Guyanese emulating Arabian lowlifes of Saudi Arabia?

    Phoning in a campus to send threats is not a good idea these days as everything is in the grid and America sent tracking equipment for the police.

  • dhanpaul narine  On February 14, 2019 at 1:11 pm

    Trevor, the person has been arrested. There has to be a trial and conviction. Let us await those before passing judgment. And yes, since we are Guyanese, and polarized, we have to bring race into it. Even though we went to UG and should know better.

  • Trevor  On February 14, 2019 at 6:22 pm

    I haven’t posted with prejudice. My comment was jokey and meant for laughs, hence the question mark after my hypothesis.
    It’s just as how I make sarcastic jokes regarding AFC frontman Mr. Trotman promising that every Guyanese person will become Dubai billionaires by 2020.

  • Veda Mohabir  On February 16, 2019 at 8:34 pm

    “Defence Lawyer Latchmie Rahamat lamented that her client was last Friday arrested and presented with a computer-generated printout of a telephone number similar to hers. Rahamat said the printout had no official stamp, title or heading that indicated it was obtained from a telecoms company.”

    Why would the chief magistrate not question the authenticity of the printout with “no official stamp, title or heading that indicated it was obtained from a telecoms company.” ?

    Watching this case.


    • Trevor  On February 17, 2019 at 1:07 am

      Telephone calls are traced from records, as in, if someone made a threat and called UG at 1:45pm, and the phone records of the phone company showed that 600-0000 showed a similar timestamp, then 600-0000 will be investigated.

      After locating the owner of the phone number, the police would have to ascertain that the owner made the call. But even then, it’s difficult to prove.

      I know someone who used to work in a cellphone shop, and it was easy for them to use fake IDs to make up fake cell numbers for their customers. Who would refuse to do that for a cell phone sale?

      I’m not sure how the AFC We will become wealthy as Dubai, but can’t deposit the US$18 Million, does their investigations.

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