May 8, 2021

Guyana Guardian

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Gary Best walks free; Magistrate says Prosecution failed to prove case


Former Chief-of-Staff of the Guyana Defence Force (GDF), Rear Admiral (rtd), Gary Best walked out of the Georgetown Magistrate’s Court a free man on Thursday after Magistrate Rondell Weaver upheld a no-case submission made by defence attorney, Nigel Hughes.

The Magistrate dismissed the charge of causing death by dangerous driving.

Best, 61, of Sparedaam, East Coast Demerara had pleaded not guilty to the charge which alleged that on February 8, 2020, at Clive Lloyd Drive, Georgetown, he drove motorcar PRR 8182 in a dangerous manner which resulted in the death of national cyclist, Jude Bentley.

Best was out on $500,000 bail during trial.  Last month, Hughes made a no-case submission calling for the charge to be dismissed against his client on the grounds that the prosecution failed to prove key elements of the case.

When the case was called on Thursday afternoon, Magistrate Weaver upheld the no-case submission on the grounds that the prosecution lacked sufficient evidence.

The vehicle, driven by Gary Best, at the scene of the accident

The Magistrate said that the prosecutor failed to establish that Best was driving dangerously, which led to the death of Bentley. The case was prosecuted by Shellon Daniels.

Best, is however, is still before City Magistrate, Clive Nurse for the offence of driving under the influence of alcohol.

The 41-year-old national cyclist was killed on the Rupert Craig Highway on February 8 while training; he was struck down by a Land Cruiser driven by Best.

Best was initially taken into custody but was released on $100,000 station bail. He was found to be way above the alcohol limit at the time of the accident.

Two weeks after his death, Bentley’s friends and family picketed outside the Georgetown Magistrates’ Court and called for charges to be laid against Best.

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