February 11, 2016
A married couple suspected of dealing small arms appeared before Chief Magistrate Joyann Ferguson-Pratt yesterday.
Rajiv Dames, 31, and Katina Dames, 29, the parents of a four-year-old boy, were arrested on February 6 after police found a cache of weapons and ammunition inside an apartment in Grand Bahama.
On the charges of possession of a firearm with intent to supply, prosecutors allege that the couple had six 9mm pistols, three .40 pistols and 19 magazines -- 11 9mm magazines, three .380 magazines and three .40 magazines. They are accused of having 1,046 rounds of ammunition of assorted caliber. Police seized 751 rounds of 9mm ammunition, 176 rounds of .40 ammunition, 86 rounds of .380 ammunition, 18 rounds of .357 ammunition and two rounds of .38 special ammunition. They pleaded not guilty to 34 counts.
Mr. Dames was also charged with four offenses against the Road Traffic Act. He denied charges of driving an unlicensed 1993 Toyota Tercel on February 6, driving an uninspected vehicle, driving without third party insurance and driving a heavily tinted vehicle. He also denied those charges.
Defense attorney Ashley Evans made an application for bail after she was advised that the magistrate had the jurisdiction to hear the application. According to Evans, Mrs. Dames worked as an electrician at the Grand Bahama Shipyard. She said that the evidence against Mrs. Dames was weak as the contraband was found at a residence to which she had no connection.
Evans said that Mr. Dames rented the apartment and he had told police that his wife did not have access to it.
Ferguson-Pratt told Evans that she would have to provide this information in an affidavit and give the prosecution an opportunity to respond.
The couple returns to court on February 18 for a bail hearing and a decision on the venue of the trial. Evans wants the trial held in Freeport because the offenses occurred there. She also said that her clients would not be able to afford travel expenses and would have to find someone to look after their son.
For his part, Assistant Superintendent of Police Clifford Daxon asked for the trial be held in New Providence to avoid transporting the exhibits on multiple occasions.
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