Top Cop: Crime crackdown begins
By NALINEE SEELAL Tuesday, August 6 2013
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DCP Mervyn Richardson...
TWO HOURS after National Security Minister Emmanuel George met with top brass of the Police Service and Defence Force, a new and robust anti crime initiative to deal with criminal activities targeting the entry of illegal arms and ammunition into this country was put into effect.
This was disclosed yesterday by Deputy Police Commissioner Mervyn Richardson, who attended the hastily called meeting on Sunday to deal with the upsurge in gun related violence throughout the country.
According to DCP Richardson, the joint teams, which included officers of the police service, army, coast guard, and air guard, along with volunteers teamed up on Sunday afternoon and began putting the new anti crime plan in place which saw several hotspot crime areas being placed under lock down while in other areas road blocks were carried out from Sunday night and continued yesterday.
According to the deputy police commissioner, “we are doing this a little differently based on the intelligence we have at our disposal. We will be working in a more robust manner and we will be working without partners and other social groups in the communities, and therefore, the public can expect to see an increased visibility and more robust investigations into criminal activities which involve the use of firearms.”
He said that round the clock roadblocks will now be in effect and he pleaded with the public to bear with the police as they continued in their efforts to take the crime fighting initiatives to another level.
“There will be some discomfort to the public yes, but we are doing all this to ensure
that they themselves are safer,” Richardson said.
He also revealed that the air guard, coast guard, and defence force will be aiding the police in the initiative, for instance, by increasing spot checks on vessels coming in and out of the country for illegal guns and ammunition.
He added that while the borders were being properly manned, officers on land will focus on intelligence gathering and use that information to target those involved in gun smuggling and using firearms to carry out criminal activities.
Newsday understands that the police have already started installing CCTV cameras in all hotspot crime areas throughout the country, and this is an attempt to identify criminal activities taking place so the response time in dealing with crime could be speeded up.
Richardson added that all officers, both uniformed and CID, will be taking part in the
initiative, as it will be an all out effort to reclaim Trinidad and Tobago from criminal elements.
Newsday understands that as of 1pm today, all Senior Superintendents in charge of the various divisions of the country will meet at th TT Police Service Administration building to be assigned new duties in an attempt to bring crime down throughout the country.
It remained unclear as of yesterday, when the National Security Council led by Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar will be meeting to discuss these matters.
Between Friday and yesterday, there were ten murders recorded in the country.