Wikileaks: Guyana PPP/C govt linked to convicted drug lord Roger Khan
Roger Khan funded Muslim activities, planned to blow up DEA operation
Written by Demerara Waves
Friday, 02 September
Convicted cocaine trafficker, Shaheed ‘ Roger’ Khan, who had allegedly helped build mosques and fund scholarships, had allegedly promised to blow up a Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) location and kill the United States Ambassador.
Labeled “Secret,’ the latest Wikileaked diplomatic cable from then American envoy, Roland Bullen likened Khan untoColombia’s one-time drug baron, Pablo Escobar.
Khan was arrested in Suriname in June 2006 and put on a plane to Trinidad where he was snatched by US agents and taken to New York. He was convicted for cocaine trafficking in October 2009 and sentenced to 15 years jail after a plea bargain.
In the February 1, 2006 missive, he detailed Khan’s operations that included arms and trafficking connections with the Colombian rebel group, FARC, with links to Panama and France.
Bullen recalled that Khan had allegedly threatened to kill the Ambassador and the Regional Security Officer when an informant leaked an American plan to set up a DEA counter narcotics operation inGuyana.
“After the leak, Khan threatened to blow up the site of the operation and threatened the lives of Ambassador and the then RSO (Ref D). These threats forced the operation’s abandonment,” said Bullen.
Recounting that Khan enjoyed business ties with now late Farouk Razac of Swiss House Cambio, “a big money laundering operation, to launder his narco-trafficking proceeds,” the cable noted that “Khan’s drug proceeds have also funded mosques and sent Muslims to study abroad.”
The then US Ambassador noted that Khan was operating in Guyana with apparent impunity and tacit approval of the Guyana government (GoG)
“It is believed that GoG is compromised to such an extent that it will not pursue Khan, despite paying lip service to the fight against narco-trafficking.
“Ambassador has spoken with GoG to little avail about Khan’s drug activities and unaccounted wealth. The GoG has adopted a head-in-the-sand approach to Khan and narco-trafficking in general. The GoG asks for hard evidence and pretends not to know how Khan acquires his means,” states the cable.
Bullen alleged that former Home Affairs Minister, Ronald Gajraj had employed a death squad whose principal was Khan to crack down on crime from 2002 to 2004. The cable quoted Gajraj as telling American embassy officials that Khan regularly traveled to Suriname to meet with Desi Bouterse. The two had met at a hotel in Suriname as recently as 2005.
Bullen alluded to what he termed “strong indications that Khan was deeply involved in a December 2005 shipment of weapons to FARC in Columbia.”
The cable disclosed concerns that Khan had been negotiating with former Chairman of the Guyana Sugar Corporation (GuySuco), Vic Oditt to purchase a 200 square mile ranch at Pirara in the Southern Rupununiregion. “The ranch has a large airstrip, and Khan is believed to be acting at the behest of Colombian or Panamanian narco-interests.”
He had already bought out Kaow Island, Essequibo River from local entrepreneur and Harry Rambarran in February 2005. Once owned by the now bankrupt Willems
Timber, Kaow Island has a wharf for ocean going vessels, an airstrip, access to Guyana’s bush roads that radiate out from Bartica, and a 136,000-acre timber concession. In September 2005, Rambarran sued Khan for defaulting on a USD 1.1 million
promissory note made in partial payment for the island.
The embassy cable quoted a senior functionary of Office of the President as saying that sophisticated cell phone intercept equipment and high-powered weapons that had been seized by a Guyana Defence Force (GDF) roadblock in December 2002 had been handed back to Khan.
“Our interlocutor said the arrest had been “a mistake” because Khan was “working with the police” when the arrest was made,” states the cable.