Lie-detector tests for SAUTT officers
By NALINEE SEELAL Thursday, January 13 2011
OFFICERS from the Special Anti-Crime Unit (SAUTT) are currently undergoing polygraph (lie- detector) tests at a Port-of-Spain hotel. The testing is being supervised by a foreigner specialising in administering such tests.
Polygraph tests at SAUTT are carried out every two years and even foreigners working on contract in SAUTT are subjected to the tests. There are 500 persons working in SAUTT.
Sources at SAUTT revealed it is mandatory that every two years all officers attached to the unit be subjected to the tests, and those who fail are transferred out of the unit to the police service or the service which they came from.
Today, Cabinet will decide the future of the unit based on recommendations from a Steering Committee appointed by Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar. The committee was chaired by Deputy Police Commissioner Stephen Williams and its findings were submitted to National Security Minister Brigadier John Sandy two weeks ago.
That report was discussed by Cabinet last Thursday and copies of the report distributed to members of Cabinet. Sources revealed that the investigative arm of SAUTT will be disbanded, while officers seconded to the unit will be returned to their respective services where they came from, such as the regular Police Service and Defence Force.
The intelligence data collected by SAUTT are to be transferred to another unit and the contracts of foreign officers attached to the unit will not be renewed, sources said. The future of the blimp will also be determined by Cabinet at today’s meeting.
Yesterday, officers at SAUTT told Newsday they are awaiting official word from the Prime Minister on the future of the unit and are hoping “good sense prevails.”