Royden Sebastien, January 24, 2012
Photo Credit: Melissa Edwards/BVI Platinum News
The man accused of the 2010 armed robbery at FirstBank, Royden Sebastien, pleaded guilty when he appeared before High Court Judge, Justice Albert Redhead today, March 5.
Sebastien plead guilty to the robbery involving some $31,627 and was remanded to prison until March 26 when he re-appears before Justice Redhead for sentencing. He is being represented by Mr. Richard Rowe.
Sebastien, who resided at Belmont before his arrest, had indicated a willingness to plead guilty after receiving files from the prosecution in relation to the DNA evidence in the case.
The Crown had previously indicated that they intended to rely on the DNA results and the final report of fingerprint analysis to link Sebastien to the armed robbery.
According to the allegations previously presented in the Magistrates Court, on July 26, 2010 around 10:00 am at FirstBank, Wickham's Cay, there were patrons in the bank conducting business when the Assistant Manager heard a loud noise and looked up and saw three masked men with what appeared to be rifles, instructing persons in the bank to get on the ground.
Two of the men jumped over the counter and demanded cash from the tellers.
According to the prosecution, two of the men were described as medium built and the other one as 6 feet tall. The men made good their escape after taking monies from the tellers.
An alarm was set off by the Assistant Manager and police, who were on patrol in the area, responded and initial investigations were conducted. Based on the evidence, it was later discovered that around 7:00 am on the same morning when the Assistant Manager arrived at work, a grey SUV was parked in the parking lot of the bank, close to the front entrance.
The prosecution outlined in the Magistrates Court that police then commenced a search for the robbers and the vehicle and later that morning, a grey Suzuki Grand Vitara, RT 1540 was found parked along McNamara Hill road. At the time, the engine was still running and one of the tires was deflated.
A black and purple mask was found in the jeep along with other items. The robbers also left a bag at the bank. According to the evidence, at 8:30 am on the same day of the robbery, a resident in the Romney's apartment made a report that his grey four-door Suzuki jeep, RT 1540 was missing.
In July 2010 police met Sebastien and told him about the robbery and during the informal cautioned interview, he said he was not surprised that the police did not come for him on the same day of the robbery since he is always being accused of those kinds of crimes.
He also told the officer that on the day of the robbery, he got up around 8:00 am, got a ride, played basketball and then spent time outside of McKelly's in Road Town.
Sebastien was arrested on July 30, 2010 in connection with the robbery, but later discharged pending further investigations.
On January 10, 2012 he was rearrested and later charged.