Forty-three thousand, six hundred and forty-eight dollars and ninety-six cents…
That’s the amount of cash that was on the compound of the Villa Campus of the St. Vincent and the Grenadines Community College (SVGCC) during the last weekend in August when burglars struck, taking the cash and other items to a total value of EC$44.278.96.
The cash was reportedly collected as registration fees from students who enrolled at the post-secondary institution.
In the immediate aftermath of the burglary, police did not disclose the sum that was missing, and college officials remain tightlipped, with director, Nigel Scott telling I-Witness News that the burglary was not newsworthy.
“That’s not a story. Surely there are things happening in the country that are more important. No comment,” Scott told I-Witness News when asked about the heist earlier this month.
But when Nicole Bailey, a 23-year-old former secretary at the college, on Saturday, became the third person to be charged with burglarising the institution, the amount of cash stolen in the heist became known.
Understandably, the question that many Vincentians are asking is why was so much cash left at the college.
Some have also asked if those responsible for the cash would be made to pay it back if the prosecution fails to secure conviction of those charged.
Bailey is charged that between Aug. 28 and 30, 2015, at Villa, she entered the SVGCC and stole a Proline digital safe valued at $480, one external hard drive, valued $150, and cash amounting to $44,278. 96, the property of the SVGCC.
She appeared at the Serious Offences Court on Monday, pleaded not guilty, and was granted EC$5,000 bail with one surety.
Bailey was ordered to report to
the Calliaqua Police Station twice weekly and was placed on a 7 p.m. to 6 a.m. curfew.
She was also ordered to surrender her travel documents and stop notices have been placed at all ports of entry and exit and she is prohibited from leaving the St. Vincent and the Grenadines without the consent of the court.
Last Tuesday, Sept. 15, Kamorni Antoine, a 24-year-old mason, and Shorn Cabral, 18, a labourer, both of Glen, were charged with burglarising the Community College and stealing a quantity of items valued at EC$45,955.01, the property of the college.
They appeared at the Serious Offences Court on Wednesday and were granted bail in the sum of $50,000 each and were placed on curfew from 7 p.m. to 6 a.m.
They are also to surrender all travel documents.
The matter is scheduled for summary trial on Oct. 12.