52 new anti-crime measures tabled
By Nalinee Seelal Sunday, September 9 2012
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Minister of National Security, Jack Warner...
Minister of National Security, Jack Warner, yesterday worked out the details of 52 new anti-crime measures to deal with escalating crime, following a marathon meeting with heads of the Defence Force, TT Police Service, Regiment, TT Prisons Service and other agencies.
The meeting started at 7 am at the Ministry of National Security in Port-of-Spain and ended shortly after 7 pm. In a brief interview following the meeting, Warner told Sunday Newsday the meeting was fruitful and the anti-crime measures will now be officially documented. He said the information will now be forwarded to Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar so that she, as head of the National Security Council, will be “fully appraised of the measures” when the council meets later this week.
Warner said the meeting was aimed at formulating plans to deal with the crime situation in the country, and the recent spate of murders in particular, and “several matters were discussed at length”.
Earlier yesterday, Sunday Newsday was given a brief opportunity to photograph those attending the meeting. Among those gathered were acting Police Commissioner Stephen Williams, Deputy Commissioner Mervyn Richardson, Chief of Defence Staff Brigadier Kenrick Maharaj, Colonel Phillip Spencer, president of the Police Social and Welfare Association, Anand Ramesar, secretary of the Police Social and Welfare Association, Sgt Michael Seales, and Captain Mark Williams, of the Trinidad and Tobago Coast Guard.
Sunday Newsday understands that during the meeting, Warner spoke extensively about the urgent need to combat the crime situation and called on the Police Commissioner and his Deputy to utilise all their resources in the quest to bring crime down.
According to sources, Warner also expressed concern over the recent spate of murders in the country after being briefed by Williams that five persons had lost their lives between Friday night and yesterday. The murder toll stood at 292 for the year.
Warner reportedly called on Williams and Richardson to put in place measures to deal especially with the gang related killings in the hot spot crime areas, in particular Laventille, where there have been a spate of killings as warring gang members continued feuding in their communities. Recently, Williams noted that police officers from all divisions would be embarking on an anti- crime plan aimed at reducing crime and homicides.
At yesterday’s meeting, Warner reportedly told the top cops the public was becoming more and more concerned about the crime situation and he wanted more input from the police to allay the fears of citizens.
Warner also told the top cops he was confident they had the skills to bring crime down and he assured them that all resources needed to fight crime will be given to the security agencies.
Sources revealed that a huge chunk of the forthcoming national budget will go towards the Ministry of National Security in an effort to bring crime down.
The other security heads present at yesterday’s meeting were also briefed about how they could assist in the fight against crime. Warner is expected to make known to the public some of the measures to be introduced shortly to deal specifically with the crime situation.