TRAGIC: Crime scene investigators collect evidence at Mosquito Creek, La Romaine, where the bodies of Donald Ragoo and his wife Pamela Maharaj were found yesterday afternoon. —Photo: DAVE PERSAD

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Unemployed man with cancer kills wife, then commits suicide

By LA ROMAINE \\\\\ Susan Mohammed susan.mohammed@trinidadexpress.com

TWO weeks after losing his home and business in a court battle with relatives, a terminally ill cancer patient set fire to two properties yesterday, before driving to Mosquito Creek, La Romaine, where he shot and killed his wife, then himself in a suspected suicide pact.

Donald Ragoo, 58, of Southern Main Road, Claxton Bay was discovered dead next to his wife, Pamela Maharaj, 40. The bodies that were found around 5 p.m. lay on a reclaimed piece of land being prepared as part of the highway extension project.

The couple lived at Crescent Drive, Macaulay, and had no children. 

Police said they have not ruled out any possibilities in the deaths, and would know more after relatives were interviewed and the autopsy results known.

However, Maharaj’s sister, Anita Maharaj, said the couple were depressed after losing their house and bar following a property dispute that went to court.

Maharaj told reporters: “They were very depressed and last year Donald found out that he had cancer. He built that house from scratch and when he lost the case they told him that he had to leave his home. They did not have anywhere to go.” 

Pamela Maharaj’s nephew, Roshan, said at around 2 p.m. yesterday Ragoo moved possessions out of the house at Crescent Drive, which had been put up for sale.

He set it on fire after pouring gasoline around the building.

Around 3 p.m. Ragoo went to Southern Main Road, Claxton Bay and had a confrontation with a man at a tyre shop located next to the Sea Queen Bar, a business that Ragoo had lost in the court matter involving relatives of his first wife, who died eight years ago.

Ragoo pulled a gun on the tyre shop worker and beat him with the gun, the Express was told.

A short time later, Ragoo set fire to the bar and adjoining house, and sped off in his pick up van. 

Police believe his wife was waiting in the van. 

The Express was told at around 4.30 p.m. Ragoo called a relative and said, “Come to the creek and you will find my body”. 

At 5 p.m. police were informed that two bodies were discovered.

A party of police officers led by Senior Superintendent Cecil Santana, Superintendent James and Superintendent Zamsheed Mohammed visited the scene.

Ragoo’s nephew, Baldath Ragoo, said the couple were not employed. 

Baldath Ragoo said he last saw his uncle on Wednesday at a family gathering. 

The nephew said: “He and his wife were there. They were normal, talking and laughing with everyone. He was not talking about anything about the house.”

The bodies were removed to the San Fernando mortuary, and autopsies are expected to be performed at the Forensic Science Centre, on Monday. 

Sgt Maharaj of the Homicide Bureau (South) is continuing investigations. 


—reporting by Innis Francis, Trevor Watson

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