Sunday, January 21, 2018

DNA tests confirm burnt body that of kidnap victim

Deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) testing has confirmed that the charred remains found near Princes Town last month are those of Freeport kidnap victim Devindar Siewdass. 

The results of the DNA tests were returned to Trinidad from a laboratory in the United Kingdom on Friday, a senior homicide investigator told the Express. 

Police had suspected the human remains found on March 22 in a forested area in Princes Town were those of Siewdass, who had been kidnapped three days earlier. 

However, there needs to be legally satisfying proof that it is that of Siewdass before the family could be given the body. 

The remains were discovered by police officers who had mounted a massive foot and aerial search in forested terrain off Matriste Road, Nagee Road, Hindustan. 

Police made the discovery beneath a burning heap of tyres found more than 450 metres from a house. Police immediately arrested six persons, among them three women, who were in a house near to the burning heap. 

Investigators searched other houses in the area and seized a bloody mattress and cutlass from an unfinished house, and a pair of sunglasses believed to belong to Siewdass. 

Investigators also arrested a police constable and detained him for several days. 

The police officer and the other six were released from custody pending the DNA test result.

Siewdass, 29, of Rudy Avenue, Siewdass Road, Freeport, was last seen on the evening of March 20 as he left his home driving a black Libero PBL 396. 

The vehicle was recovered by police, abandoned in Forres Park, Claxton Bay the next day. 

Police were told he did not inform anyone where he was headed. 

According to police, his father, Annarood Siewdass, received a phone call hours later demanding $2 million for his return.

—Susan Mohammed