Mother's agony over stranded son
RAINBOW Beach man Jason Montgomery remains hospitalised in a critical condition in Guyana, South America, after being shot without reason during a robbery three weeks ago.
Another man was also wounded in the robbery, which occurred in his local bar, and the bar attendant who had just served him was shot dead, also without reason.
Mr Montgomery’s mother, Sandy Brosnan, also of Rainbow Beach, yesterday told of her frustration at the “brick walls and red tape” she had encountered in trying to have her son returned to Australia for urgent medical treatment.
Gympie's Wide Bay MP, Warren Truss, yesterday moved to pressure the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade into being of more use to Mrs Brosnan and her critically wounded and stranded son.
“He’s flat out on his back in a very bad way, in a foreign country a long way from home, and no-one seems to be able to help us get him home,” Mrs Brosnan told The Gympie Times yesterday.
She said the department appeared to have wrongly told Mr Truss that Mr Montgomery was happy with the service he had received from the Australian Government.
“They say an ambassador has been in telephone contact with him, but I can do that.
“What we need is for someone to smooth the way so we can arrange airline connections, medically supervised transport and get him home,” she said.
Mrs Brosnan says she cannot afford the $250,000 cost of an air ambulance and airlines become very hard to deal with once they hear they may have to carry a seriously injured patient.
“He was shot three weeks ago and I have found I am all alone in trying to sort this out,” she said.
“I have contacted an American company which says they can arrange transport, but they want about $24,00 up front, so I asked the department to check on their credentials and they refused.
“They apparently don’t want to buy into it for legal liability reasons.
A spokesperson for Mr Truss said he had told the department their response was unacceptable and he had asked them to provide a list of suitable organisations.
“We don’t expect them to recommend any particular one, but they should be able to advise if such organisations have a track record for this sort of service,” the spokesperson said.
The Guyana newspaper Stabroek News has reported that suspects had been arrested.
The paper reported that three men had entered a bar where Mr Montgomery was having drinks after work (he is an industrial cleaning product representative) about 9.10pm on Friday January 8 and had shot Mr Montgomery 36 and Ronald Dhanraz, 29.
They then killed bar attendant Kulmattie Singh with a deliberate shot to the head. They stole bar takings and patrons’ property.