Alleged ‘Clans’ member attended weekly prayer meetings — elderly woman

An elderly woman on Tuesday testified that Dylon McLean, an alleged member of the One Don faction of the Clansman gang, often visited her house for weekly prayer meetings, and she did not know him as a gangster.

The woman was called to the witness stand to give character evidence for McLean at the ongoing gang trial in the Home Circuit Court in downtown Kingston.

The defence teams for 24 of the 28 remaining accused have concluded cases and responses to the evidence marshalled by the prosecution since the trial started in September of last year.

McLean, in an unsworn statement last Thursday, proclaimed his innocence and suggested that he was a warehouse attendant up to the time he was arrested and charged.

On Tuesday, the senior citizen said she has lived on Jones Avenue in Spanish Town, St Catherine for more than 50 years, and she’s known McLean since he was a small boy.

She told the court that McLean lived near her, and she would see him “almost every day” sitting under a mango tree. 

Last Thursday, McLean had told the court that he did not leave his house very often, and he mostly sat under a tree connecting to his neighbour’s Wi-Fi daily.

The elderly woman told the court that she interacted very often with McLean, and he would attend prayer meetings, along with his cousins, at her home on Fridays. 

She described the accused man as being like a member of the family. She also described him as being a “calm” individual, who was easy to get along with. 

After hearing that McLean was arrested and charged with being part of a criminal organisation, the senior citizen said she was shocked to learn of those allegations. 

However, she said she was not worried because the law would take its course and McLean would be released.

“The law will have its course, and after a time, they will let him go,” she said.

The woman also said she did not believe the allegations because the accused did not have many friends. 

Further, she said she only heard him speaking loudly when he and his siblings had any disagreement. 

The woman also indicated that she had never seen McLean with a gun. 

Last week, McLean refuted claims that he held a gun or ever fired one in his life.

A former gangster-turned-state-witness had testified that McLean was an active member of the gang and that there was a secret escape route behind McLean’s house, which the gangsters often used to flee Jones Avenue and from police. 

The witness had also testified that he had seen McLean removing an Intra-Tech gun from his roof.

McLean admitted that while he lived in Jones Avenue, he hardly came out of his house, and he’d never seen any of the two former gangsters who testified against him.

The witnesses claimed, however, that they knew McLean.

Meanwhile, Chief Justice Bryan Sykes, after much hesitation, gave the remaining defence attorneys until Monday, July 4, to prepare their cases. 

The attorneys had requested records from the Horizon Remand Centre, but the creator of that information was not available to testify. 

Additionally, the records requested from the Spanish Town Police Station had not yet been presented in court. 

Those disclosures from the defence did not sit well with Sykes, who chided the defence over the preparation of its cases. 

He said the relevant records should have been available long before the defence began its response to the prosecution case. 

The 28 accused are being tried under the Criminal Justice (Suppression of Criminal Organisations Act), 2014, better known as the anti-gang legislation, on an indictment containing several counts.

The offences were allegedly committed between January 1, 2015, and June 30, 2019, mainly in St Catherine, with at least one murder committed in St Andrew.

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