Tue | Jan 18, 2022
Uchence Wilson Gang Trial

Uchence Wilson Gang Trial | Pawnshop exec reveals suspect warning signs

Published:Friday | April 12, 2019 | 12:00 AMNickoy Wilson/Gleaner Writer

The trial of reputed gang leader Uchence Wilson and his 23 alleged cronies has been adjourned until April 25.

This comes as the Home Circuit Court in downtown Kingston takes its customary break as the Hilary term ends today. The Easter Term begins on April 24.

Presiding judge Chief Justice Bryan Sykes said that the court would not sit on the opening day of the term because of ceremonial activities.

During yesterday’s proceedings, the witness, who is an executive at a local pawn company, was questioned on the operations of the business.

Among the questions asked by attorney-at-law Jacqueline Cummings, who is representing one of the accused, Ricardo Serju, a former employee of the pawn store, was how customers proved ownership of items they offered to pawn.

The pawnshop executive said that persons can prove ownership of the item by way of a receipt or a letter from a justice of the peace (JP).

Cummings then suggested that the company relied less on receipts and more on probing questions.

But the witness said, “I would not agree.”

The attorney also asked the witness if the use of a letter from a JP was one she implemented when she joined the company in February 2017.

The pawnshop executive said, “Yes, it is.”

BLACKLIST CONDITIONS

The witness was also asked under what circumstances a customer would be blacklisted.

She told the court that someone would be barred from doing business with the pawnshop if they suspected that an item had been stolen, a pawned item was subsequently confiscated by the police, and if a person seemed to be in dire need of money all the time.

The pawnshop executive also testified that if a loan was defaulted on, the pawned item would be sold.

In the case of electronics, she testified that the item would be wiped by an employee of the company, then sold.

Wilson and his 23 alleged gang members are on trial for breaches of the Criminal Justice (Suppression of Criminal Organisations) Act 2014, commonly known as the anti-gang ­legislation, for crimes allegedly committed between 2015 and 2017.

They are also on trial for breaches of the Firearms Act.

nickoy.wilson@gleanerjm.com