Witness adamant gangsters planned attack on community in ‘Spain’ | Loop Jamaica

The content originally appeared on: Jamaica News

A former gangster was on Thursday adamant that members of the One Don faction of the Clansman gang had planned to carry out a murder and other criminal activities in a community called ‘Fisheries’ in the Twickenham Park area of Spanish Town, St Catherine.

The claim was made by the prosecution’s first witness who was facing questioning from the crown and additional cross-examination from attorney Denise Hinson, who was recently assigned to represent Bryan Morris, an accused in the ongoing trial of 33 alleged gang members.

The witness claimed that in 2017, he heard the alleged leader of the criminal organisation, Andre ‘Blackman’ Bryan, saying that he was going to “burn down Fisheries and kill some yutes” in the area.

The witness said Bryan revealed to him and other gangsters that he was going to kill a man by the name of ‘Bobo Sparks’, a top shooter of a rival gang who the prosecution’s second witness testified that Bryan shot and killed.

According to the first witness, Bryan told him (the first witness) to ensure that the police were not in the community at the time of the attack.

Before leaving, the witness, who claimed he was Bryan’s personal driver, said he saw a man called ‘Rooster’, identified as accused Bryan Morris, and ‘Stennett’, identified as defendant Michael Whitely, with a box of bottle bombs. They were also allegedly armed with guns.

But defence attorney Hinson said there was no mention in the witness’ statement to the police that the gangsters were going to kill someone at Fisheries.

But the witness insisted that he told police investigators the alleged intention of the gangsters.

“In the statement it say Blackman intended to kill di yute at Fisheries don’t; I can’t read Blackman mind, nuh mus talk him talk it?” the witness responded.

Hinson remained adamant that the witness did not mention anything about a killing in the statement, but the witness again countered by insisting that “I am not a mind reader”.

During Thursday’s proceedings, the prosecution’s second witness, who described himself as the second in command of the gang, resumed being cross-examined by defence attorneys.

During the session, he told the court that a police officer was causing havoc for the One Don faction, as he often patrolled sections of the Spanish Town area. The witness said based on that situation, gang members were conspiring to have the cop murdered.

The male witness said he knew he could trust that policeman, and went to him with information he knew. However, he said the officer told him to take his evidence to the “bigger heads in the force”.

The now witness did what was told to him and went to the Counter-Terrorism and Organised Crime Investigations Branch (C-TOC), where law enforcers there told him they already knew about the information he gave them.

However, the witness provided additional statements to the officers.

Meanwhile, the witness, who is testifying via video link from a remote location, said although Bryan’s brother, defendant Kevin Green, was a top-tier member of the criminal network, Bryan never wanted him (his brother) to get too involved in the ‘runnings’ of the gang.

The witness said Bryan kept Green away from “a lot of things”, but despite that purported action by the gang leader, his brother was allegedly involved in activities such as gun buying.

Bryan, along with 31 other men and a woman, are being tried in the Home Circuit Court under the Criminal Justice (Suppression of Criminal Organisations Act), 2014, better known as the anti-gang legislation, on an indictment with 25 counts, for allegedly being part of a criminal organisation, in a judge-alone trial.

Bryan and his co-accused have all pleaded not guilty to the charges against them.

The men and the woman have been charged with multiple offences, including being part of a criminal organisation, illegal possession of firearm, illegal possession of ammunition, facilitating conspiracy to murder, and facilitating arson.

The offences were allegedly committed between January 1, 2015 and June 30, 2019, in St Catherine.