RYMUR Serial 2445
May 20, 1980 • 1845 • Georgetown-State • 2329

[Editor’s notes: The name in this serial who is deleted is FBI Special Agent Donald Hale, whose name appears more than 25 times in RYMUR serials. The deleted information from the memorandum – designated by brackets – which is known to the editor has been indicated by red type.

[This is a cable from the files of the State Department that was included in the FBI’s 2009 RYMUR release of documents under the Freedom of Information Act. It was not included in the State Department’s own release, but we have included identifying information for it using the agency’s designations.[

P 201845Z MAY 80
FM AMEMBASSY GEORGETOWN
TO SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 2524
INFO DIRECTOR FBI WASHDC
GEORGETOWN 2329
BOGOTA FOR LEGATT
FBI WASHDC PASS TO SA [DONALD HALE] FBI SAN FRANCISCO
E.O. 12065: NA
TAGS: CARR, GY (LAYTON, LAWRENCE [Laurence])
SUBJ: TRIAL OF US CITIZEN LAWRENCE LAYTON FOR ATTEMPTED MURDER
REF: GEORGETOWN 2244

1. The tenth day of the trial of US citizen Lawrence Layton saw senior counsel for the defense Rex McKay call upon three witnesses. McKay summoned the magistrate who had presided over the first preliminary inquiry (PI) in December of 1978 into the shootings at the Port Kaituma airstrip on November 18, 1978. McKay claimed that Guyanese ballistic expert Eustace Kendall had given testimony at the trial which was in contradiction to that given at the first PI. Magistrate [Krishna Veni] Chinta said that she could not recall what Kendall had said but that her notes of the PI would show his testimony. Presiding Judge Lindsay [Lindsey] Collins ruled that McKay’s exercise was pointless as the contradiction involved was very minor.

2. McKay then called upon a local doctor to testify as an expert on the type of wounds that a .38 caliber revolver fired at point blank range would cause. The defense also summoned Durka Persaud who had been a rural constable at Port Kaituma on the day Layton was arrested. Persaud testified that he saw Layton shortly after the shooting at the airstrip “staring at the sky in a dazed manner”. Persaud said he had not heard Layton admit to the Port Kaituma police that he had shot persons at the airstrip. According to Persaud, Layton was in an extremely confused state and continually repeated “CIA, CIA”. Under cross-examination from the prosecution, Durka Persaud admitted that he had previously testified at the PI that he had entered the police outpost after Layton had been brought in, and that Layton could well have said something to other persons which he would not have heard.

3. The defense has summoned Clement Liladhrie [Liladrie], the rural constable that originally took Layton into custody. The trial will continue on May 21.

Roberts [George B. Roberts, Jr., American ambassador to Guyana]

NNNN*

Originally posted on November 12th, 2020.

Last modified on July 27th, 2022.
Skip to main content