Justice Frank Seepersad : “War raging in TTPS with criminally minded officers”

Justice Frank Seepersad : “War raging in TTPS with criminally minded officers”

High Court Judge Frank Seepersad says the time has come for every po­lice sta­tion to have op­er­a­tional CCTV sur­veil­lance cam­eras and for each of­fi­cer to be out­fit­ted a body cam­era when he leaves the sta­tion. He said such a sys­tem will pro­tect both the pub­lic and the po­lice of­fi­cers.

The outspoken Judge says the war against crime is being fought both outside and inside the TTPS: “It is ev­i­dent that in this so­ci­ety there is not on­ly a war which is un­fold­ing by crim­i­nals on the streets of this Re­pub­lic but there is clear­ly a war rag­ing with­in the Po­lice Ser­vice where there are er­rant dis­hon­est and crim­i­nal­ly-in­clined po­lice of­fi­cers who are bring­ing the ser­vice in­to dis­re­pute and who are caus­ing ir­repara­ble harm and dam­age to the pub­lic’s con­fi­dence in the po­lice ser­vice and there­fore the war against crime has to be fought both in­ter­nal­ly in the po­lice ser­vice and ex­ter­nal­ly with the crim­i­nal el­e­ment which abounds,”

The Judge was commenting in the wake of a matter involving police brutality in which PCs Mur­ray Mo­hammed and Ron­nie Ed­wards who were ac­cused of kid­nap­ping, rob­bing and beat­ing civil­ian Clint At­tong in a po­lice sta­tion, and the added situation whereby Mo­hammed is cur­rent­ly at­tached to the Spe­cial In­ves­ti­ga­tions Unit of the Po­lice Ser­vice.

The judge or­dered the de­fen­dants Mur­ray, Ed­wards, the At­tor­ney Gen­er­al and civil­ian Prem­c­hand Sookram to pay dam­ages to At­tong for as­sault and bat­tery and false im­pris­on­ment for five hours as well as ex­em­plary and ag­gra­vat­ed dam­ages.

Justice Seepersad was also shocked and appalled that to date no dis­ci­pli­nary ac­tion has been ini­ti­at­ed against the of­fi­cers or no de­ci­sion tak­en in re­la­tion to crim­i­nal charges, par­tic­u­lar­ly kid­nap­ping and rob­bery, the judge di­rect­ed the Reg­is­trar to send the tran­script of the pro­ceed­ings and judg­ment to the Di­rec­tor of Pub­lic Pros­e­cu­tions (DPP) and to the Com­mis­sion­er of Po­lice to de­ter­mine whether crim­i­nal charges should be in­sti­tut­ed against the of­fi­cers.

Seepersad al­so strong­ly sug­gest­ed that the com­mis­sion­er make an im­me­di­ate de­ter­mi­na­tion re­gard­ing dis­ci­pli­nary charges against Mo­hammed.

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