Vaughn “Sandman” Mieres has been granted $450,000 bail on the charge that he conspired to murder Selwyn “Robocop” Alexis in October 2014.
Mieres appeared before Acting Chief Magistrate Maria Busby Earle Caddle in the Port of Spain Eighth Magistrates Court just before noon yesterday, on the conspiracy charge and a separate charge of being in unlawful possession of a yellow crown parrot.
The conspiracy to murder charge comes more than one year after Alexis was killed.
On July 17 last year, Alexis and two others were shot dead at his Enterprise, Chaguanas business place.Mieres, 44, of St Michael’s Village, Las Cuevas, appeared in court on crutches, wearing a light blue long sleeve shirt and blue jeans.
He was not called on to plead on the conspiracy charge and pleaded not guilty to being in possession of the parrot on August 31; the date he was arrested at his home by police.
The parrot was brought to court in a wire cage by Game Warden Edwards.
Mieres’ attorney Mario Merritt, in his application to bail, said his client had two pending matters for obscene language and resisting arrest arising out of an incident in 2012 and a previous conviction for which he was fined $5,000.
In objecting to bail, court prosecutor Inspector Winston Dillon said the conspiracy charge was a very serious one and was allegedly committed while Mieres was on bail on the pending charges.
He also said there was likelihood of the accused interfering with witnesses if granted bail.
On the charge of the unlawful possession of the parrot, Dillon objected to bail on the grounds that it was a criminal offence and the yellow crown parrot was a protected species.
Mieres was held by police during an anti-crime exercise in Las Cuevas between Independence Day (August 31) and Friday.
In a release over the weekend, the police service stated that officers executed a search warrant at Mieres’ home.
Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Roger Gaspard subsequently advised them to charge Mieres.
The Organised Crime Narcotics and Firearms Bureau (OCNFB), Financial Investigations Branch (FIB), Criminal Gang Intelligence Unit (CGIU), Inter-Agency Task Force and the Strategic Services Agency (SSA) were all said to have been involved in the exercise.
According to the Offences against the Person Act, the murder conspiracy charge carries a prison term of ten years if convicted.
Mieres is to reappear in court on October 2.