Special prosecutor approved for ‘Brazilian church’ pastor charged with death by dangerous driving
Attorney-at-law Eusi Anderson has been assigned as special prosecutor to the case of Haleno Luiz, the Universal Church pastor accused of causing the death of Maurice Moseley by dangerous driving.
The matter was previously prosecuted by police prosecutors Deniro Jones and Arwyn Moore, through the Office of the Director of Public Prosecution. The DPP office recently issued the fiat for Anderson to prosecute the case against Luiz, upon the request of the family.
A reliable source at the court confirmed this to Demerara Waves Online News.
Luiz appeared in court today, March 29, one day after he walked out of the Georgetown Magistrates’ Court after securing High Court bail. Two previous attempts to secure bail from the Magistrates’ Court had failed, leaving the church leader on remand at the Camp Street prison.
Luiz had been on remand since he was charged on March 6, for causing the death of Maurice Moseley, when he droved his vehicle in a manner dangerous to the public, striking Moseley off his motorbike at the corner of Hadfield and Smyth Streets on March 3.
Moseley was pronounced dead on arrival at the Georgetown Public Hospital.
When Luiz was first presented before the court, police prosecutor Deniro Jones made strong objections to bail. Jones took into consideration the nature and penalty of the offense, as well as the fact that Luiz is not a Guyanese citizen.
Jones told the court then that Luiz had not offered his passport to the authorities, a position which was strongly rejected by Luiz’s lawyer who told the court his client was never asked to submit his passport during the March 3 investigation.
Chief Magistrate McLennan denied bail for the accused, since there was concern that he would flee the jurisdiction.
His current attorney, Mark Waldron, first appeared on Luiz’s behalf on March 15. Waldron had made a second bail application, for which police prosecutor Arwyn Moore made no objection.
Chief Magistrate Ann McLennan was, then, at odds on police prosecutor Moore’s swift no-objection to bail, even though the investigating officers had not yet confirmed a fixed addressed for the accused.
Luiz, a 35-year-old Brazil national, pleaded not guilty on March 15 to the charge against him that he caused the death of Moseley as he was driving his vehicle in a manner dangerous to the public.
Moore, after concerns raised by the Chief Magistrate, then requested that the matter be stood down for two weeks so that ranks could confirm the address of the accused.
The court had initially expressed concern since Luiz’s stated address was the address of the church, where he worked.
Waldron had told the court previously his client’s address is listed as Charlotte and Wellington Streets because the church was the organisation which applied for the work permit on Luiz’s behalf.
McLennan, however, remained unsatisfied saying the accused was a flight risk, and further, the Guyana-Brazil border is easily accessible.
Luiz, a well-known televangelist, has television programmes on Channels 9, 11, and 69, which air in Georgetown, Demerara, and Berbice.
He moved to Guyana three years ago spreading the word of God. He is a resident of Guyana who holds a work permit issued last year. Luiz was however working in Guyana for three years, attached to the Church.