LOCAL police and their counterparts from several Caribbean territories will undergo an intense training workshop this week at the Police Academy in St James, aimed at enhancing intelligence-gathering skills to combat drug smuggling, the illegal trade of weapons, and human trafficking.
Speaking on Monday at the launch of the programme, entitled the Regional Counter Drug Intelligence Training Course, Minister of National Security Edmund Dillon urged participants to make the most of the opportunity to enhance their knowledge and understanding of investigative work but also to apply this information to their daily duties.
He said participants have an obligation to pass on what they learned at the workshop to colleagues in their respective territories, and expressed optimism that programmes such as this would go a long way towards securing borders from the entry of illegal drugs. He said drug trafficking in many ways appeared to be the origin of all major crimes perpetrated in the Caribbean.
“When we look at our regional and national security environments, particularly in the Caribbean, there are commonalities among all jurisdictions. If you look at the basket of crimes or activities, there is a nexus between drugs and every issue in the Caribbean. In TT, as in other Caribbean countries, these crimes can go from murder to drugs, to murder and gang warfare,” Dillon said.
Citing the success of national security agencies in disrupting the shipment of illegal narcotics, he said the efforts of local and regional authorities were not in vain and was confident that additional training initiatives would make an even larger impact on the Caribbean.
Acting Police Commissioner Stephen Williams was also confident the workshop would yield results saying the police remain committed to battling the drug trade. He said criminals are beginning to find newer and more innovative ways of transporting illegal drugs across national borders and law enforcement must similarly evolve to defend against such threats.