Cocaine in gas cylinderThirty-three-year-old Mark Gomes and 38-year-old Mohamed Kadir who were jointly charged for the possession of 2.25 kilogram of cocaine found hidden in a gas cylinder were on Tuesday sentenced to four years in prison after they appeared before Chief Magistrate Ann McLennan.The men were charged, along with Ryan Fowler, who had pleaded guilty to the allegation and was jailed for four years.It was reported that two vehicles parked in the vicinity of Sheriff Street, Georgetown were being observed by ranks attached to the Customs Anti-Narcotics Unit (CANU). At approximately 19:45h, the ranks noticed Kadir exiting one of the motor cars, carrying a yellow gas cylinder. He moved to the other vehicle that was occupied by Gomes and Fowler.The three suspects were stopped by the investigators who conducted a search, resulting in the illegal substance being discovered. However, the two accused were given the opportunity to tell their side of the story before the Court and in an unsworn statement, Kadir first explained that he was called by Gomes to meet a friend who was encountering mechanical issues on his vehicle.He told the Court that when that friend (R Fowler) showed up at a shop on Sheriff Street, Georgetown with Gomes as a passenger, CANU ranks reportedly pounced on them.According to Kadir, he was unaware as to why he was arrested until much later. He told the Court that Fowler had told him and Gomes that the drug found belonged only to him. Gomes’s story meshed with what was related by Kadir.Their Attorneys, Glenn Hanoman and Mark Waldron in summing up their case stated that the prosecution’s case was based on the reliability and credibility of one witness and called for a no-case submission.However, in her rebuttal, CANU Prosecutor Konyo Sandiford said that the case against the defendants was proven beyond reasonable doubt.Only four days ago, the father of Mark Gomes, Andre Gomes, called “Zipper,” was freed of drug trafficking charges by Magistrate Leron Daly, who ruled that CANU had been unable to support its allegations against Gomes with enough evidence to warrant a conviction.The elder Gomes, 57, of Craig Street, Campbellville, Georgetown, had been arraigned on trafficking in narcotics charges after a search carried out at his residence had allegedly unearthed 992 grams of cocaine, a quantity of cash, jewellery, and other valuables.
Vancouver-based Rebound Orthopedics & Neurosurgery has received a $265,000 grant to explore whether robotic procedures are more effective in knee replacements and resurfacing than traditional manual methods.The three-year grant comes from MAKOplasty, Rebound’s vendor for robotic knee replacement equipment and is intended to prove what now is only anecdotal: that robotic surgical procedures produce better outcomes than traditional methods. Those include a smaller incision, less blood and scarring, less impact to bone and tissue, a quicker recovery and a reduced hospital stay, said Michelle Braunsten, Rebound’s marketing director.“For now, it’s anecdotal,” Braunsten said.The grant money will pay for two research studies. The first study, over a period of 10 years, will compare health outcomes of robotic-assisted partial knee resurfacing with a manual total knee replacement. A second study will examine over a three-year period the costs of robotic-assisted surgery versus the traditional kind.In robotic-assisted knee resurfacing and replacement, a surgeon uses 3-D imagining of the patient’s knee to program a surgery on an interactive robotic arm. During the procedure, the surgeon guides the robot and receives feedback on positioning as the robotic arm carves off damaged parts of the knee, according to the MAKOplasty website.About 150 patients are expected to participate in the research. They don’t get to choose which kind of procedure they receive, Braunsten said. Few patients are eligible for the robotic procedure because they have to be in the early stages of knee degeneration. Most patients don’t go to see a doctor until their knee pain is so advanced that replacement is needed, she said.