The criminal elements in this country have reportedly begun operating work-to-own vehicles.
Supt Terrence Nowbutt of the North Central Division of the police made the revelation during a media briefing on Thursday at the Police Headquarters in Port of Spain.
Nowbutt said gangs have entered the transport business by operating fleets of PH cars.
“They have these people, especially young people, whom they are giving vehicles to work and they pay for it.”
He said such drivers works as lookouts for the gang.
“So while they are working on the road, they are feeding back the gang information, for instance the location of the police and other information the gang may need to carry out their illegal activities.”
Nowbutt said gangs also stole motor vehicles, often to commit robberies or murders.
The most targeted brands were firstly Nissan (including Tiida, AD, Almera and Wingroad), Toyota (including Aqua, Corolla, Fielder and Axio), and Honda (including Civic.)
“The public just has to be aware of these things, how they are operating. We are aware of it, and that is how we are targeting them now.”
He said gangs also profited from illegal quarrying, plus the sale of illicit narcotics, arms and ammunition.
San Juan Tax Association president Christopher Lara, in a Newsday report, said some PH taxis on the San Juan taxi stand at Charlotte Street near Independence Square, Port of Spain, were stolen cars with false licence plates.
He said, “They are frightening legitimate taxi drivers from coming out and working late in the evening. They (legitimate taxi drivers) are frightened for their lives, so these PH cars have literally taken over the taxi stand.”
Lara wants more police at that spot to curb rampant criminality.