Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : July 17th 2015 Contents A5
Friday, July 17, 2015 www.guardian.co.tt Guardian
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JENSEN LA VENDE
A 53-year-old Rio Claro man was
stabbed repeatedly early yesterday
before his killers torched his home
with his body inside.
Relatives said around 2 am, they
were alerted that John Herrera's home
was on fire and tried to douse the
flames unaware he was still in the
The victim's daughter, Kareena
Herrera, said her father was a private
person who was well liked in the Wil-
son Trace, Brother's Road, Rio Claro,
area where he lived.
"He was a cool-going person, quiet
and I don't see the reason for doing
that to him. We didn't know him to
have any enemies.
"Even so, they didn't need to do
that. They stab him up in the belly
and then they burn him beyond con-
dition. His legs and hands and thing
burn. He was just burn bad," she said
outside the Forensic Science Centre,
St James, where an autopsy was done.
Herrera said relatives thought her
father was not at home since they
were not hearing any screams coming
from inside the house. It was only
after the fire was extinguished they
found his body.
"Boy, this is just a shock to all of
us. I mean he was a quiet man. The
most he would do is drink his old
rum and if someone tell him some-
thing he would give them backchat
but that's the extent of it.
"If he needed anything he was
going to call us. I don't know why
someone would do this, or if someone
was bothering him. We didn't know
anything about this at all," his daugh-
Man stabbed to death and body burnt in house
John Herrera, who was
stabbed to death and his
Rio Claro home set ablaze
early yesterday morning.
In addition to the Chatham South Trace quadruple murder, two homicides in
south Trinidad were being probed by police yesterday.
Brent Luces, 41, a father of two, was gunned down outside his grandmoth-
er's home at Blitz Village, Pleasantville, around 9 am.
Speaking to reporters, Avril Luces, the victim's mother, said Brent was
heard arguing with someone shortly before he was shot.
"My mother was upstairs and she heard Brent and another man arguing
about Play Whe," said the distraught mother. "She said all of a sudden she
heard gunshots but she did not see the person."
Avril recalled her last conversation with her son, which took place
about an hour before his death, when she came to pick up his 18-
month-old son to carry him to day care.
"I had some money in the car door and he say Mammy you must
not leave money outside like that, somebody could rob you.'"
Brent's 16-year-old daughter, who lives elsewhere, was brought to
the scene, where she held on to her grandmother and wept.
Speaking to reporters at the scene, a South Division police said
the Luces family was well known to them and the victim had
several charges for possession of guns and drugs but police did
not identify a motive for the killing.
Several eyewitnesses at the scene said they saw a man
dressed in a Cepep uniform fleeing the scene after Brent
The man ran through some bushes opposite the house
and was seen taking off the Cepep coverall as he ran.
He escaped into a waiting vehicle on Maple Street, a
short distance away from the scene, witnesses said.
Investigators found spent shells in front and
behind the house. It is believed the gunman shot
Brent in front of the house and followed him as he
ran behind the house where he was shot again. He
was found dead beneath a tree in the backyard.
Avril said Brent was the eldest of her five sons
and described him as a cool person. She said he was
employed on-and-off in the Point Lisas Industrial
His father was well known cyclist Ken Luces who
died last year while cycling at Skinner Park.
Southern Division police are continuing investiga-
Police also were investigating the circumstances
surrounding the killing of John Herrera, 57, who was
stabbed to death last night and whose Rio Claro
home was later torched. (See story below)
Avril Luces, mother of Brent Luces who was shot
dead at his home in Blitz Village, Pleasantville,
comforts her younger daughter, Britney, at the
crime scene yesterday. PHOTO: TONY HOWELL
Brent Luces who was
shot dead at Blitz Village,
A 58-year-old man of Tacarigua who was
caught attempting to smuggle cocaine in a
package of handicraft has been sentenced to
14 years in prison.
Balram Supersad, of Dinsley Village,
Tacarigua, received the sentence yesterday when
he appeared before High Court judge Hayden
St Clair-Douglas for the first time since he was
convicted by a nine-member jury last month.
Supersad will only serve 11-and-a-half years
as the period he spent in jail before he could
access bail was deduced from his sentence.
Passing the sentence in the Port-of-Spain
Fourth Criminal Court yesterday, St Clair-Dou-
glas said the hefty sentence should serve as a
deterrent to other potential traffickers.
"This court denounces drug mules who use
legitimate forms of trade as conduits for the
transportation of illegal drugs. The nefarious
nature of the drug trade breeds societal decay
as large parts of society are affected by drug
addiction," St Clair-Douglas said.
Seemingly unfazed by the prospect of spend-
ing a decade in prison, Supersad turned around
and grinned at his relatives as he was being
led out of the prisoner enclosure of the court.
Supersad is the second man to be sentenced
in the Port-of-Spain High Court this week for
On Monday, Steve Mohammed was sentenced
to six years after he pleaded guilty to trafficking
three kilos of cocaine and 300 grammes of
Mohammed's sentence was significantly less
than Supersad's as he was given a discount for
pleading guilty and avoiding a trial.
According to the evidence presented in his
trial, Supersad was arrested by officers of the
Organised Crime, Narcotics and Firearms
Bureau, while attempting to ship the package
at a courier service in Macoya in October 2002.
Insp Wendell Lucas, who made the arrest
testified that when he inspected Supersad's
plywood box and drilled holes in the side, he
found a white powdery substance mixed with
After Supersad was arrested and package
was dismantled, police found ten secret com-
partments containing cocaine. The drugs
weighed a total of 4.5 kilos.
Supersad testified in his defence in the trial
and claimed he was hired to deliver the package
to the location and was in the company of its
owner when he was arrested.
This allegation was denied by several of the
police officers who testified in the trial.
Supersad's explanation was also criticised
by St Clair-Douglas who said: "His evidence
provided no explanation for the man's disap-
pearance and why he was not charged by police."
that the drugs be destroyed.
Supersad was represented by Raphael Morgan
while Shabaana Shah prosecuted.
gets 14 years
Dad killed outside
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