Black Immigrant Daily News
Thirty individuals who reside in the United States who continue to influence crime and violence in Jamaica, are on a target list of the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF).
This was revealed on Tuesday by the Commissioner of Police, Major General Antony Anderson during a press briefing at Jamaica House where Prime Minister Andrew Holness announced the declaration of states of emergency (SOEs) in eight parishes.
Anderson said these individuals are in addition to the over 300 violence producers locally, for whom the JCF has prepared intelligence packages and is actively building cases against them. The commissioner had first mentioned the 300 individuals on November 15 when an earlier round of SOEs was declared for seven parishes. He said then that those persons were the main targets of the SOEs.
On Tuesday, the top cop sought to clarify that SOEs are not solely focused on the 300 individuals for whom the police have built files.
“As the prime minister says, we’re also working with our overseas partners on some of this. We have a target list of 30 who reside in the US who we’re doing some work on,” said Anderson.
“Those who are over there who believe that they are supporting violence and crime in Jamaica and they are doing so without anybody paying any attention to them they’re sorely mistaken,” the commissioner added.
He said that “along with our partners we’ll deal with that aspect of things also”.
While admitting that persons who were picked up during the SOEs of November 15 to 29 were released except for “a few” who were charged, Anderson said the SOEs were not just about detention.
“There are a suite of operations that take place under a state of public emergency that disrupt, that cause persons to make different decisions and choices and who are in the criminal underworld, and also those who we know that are significant violence producers, to bring them in,” said Anderson.
He stressed that “it’s not only 300 people who’re involved in violence in Jamaica. We take some 700 guns off the roads per year and people are still out there shooting”.
The commissioner explained that the 300 figure includes cases with evidence and significant intelligence and relates to persons who are presently being targeted. “But some will come up and others will come on…it’s really how much we can target within our capacity at any one time,” he stated.
Meanwhile, the prime minister left the island for Washington, United States on Tuesday for a five-day visit during which he will hold talks with the relevant authorities in a bid to get better cooperation on identifying and dealing with persons in the North American country who continue to influence crime and violence in Jamaica.
Holness said his visit is to “start the process of getting a more intense cooperation in treating with the foreign actors in our local crime – those dons, those who have migrated overseas that in this (Christmas) season they will be sending the bag of rice and all the other goodies in the barrel. But secreted in that bag of rice, wrapped up in that blanket will be a gun or ammunition or parts thereof”.
He was speaking at Tuesday’s press briefing where he announced the latest SOEs.
Holness cautioned persons receiving such packages over the yuletide season that it was “not for your benefit but to give to a youngster to kill”.
And for those sending the weapons he said “They can’t feel that they’re free to influence, direct, solicit and finance crime in Jamaica so I head to Washington to have meetings with Justice Department, the FBI and other entities there”.
The prime minister warned those overseas that he was serious about bringing an end to their criminal activities.
“You’re overseas and you’re sponsoring, directing, soliciting or financing crime in Jamaica, we’re going to get you,” he declared.