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Wednesday 26 September 2018
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Media workers give statement to police

Acting Commissioner of Police, Harold Phillip.
Acting Commissioner of Police, Harold Phillip.

Two media workers who were reportedly attacked, threatened and verbally assaulted while seeking an interview with businessman Nazim Baksh who is at the centre of the fake oil controversy, were interviewed at the Penal Police Station by officers of the Professional Standards Bureau.

Trinidad Guardian photographer Kristian De Silva and reporter Sasha Wilson were asked to make themselves available for an interview shortly after 2 pm yesterday. The two journalists complied with the request and were interviewed at length involving an alleged physical and verbal assault levelled against them last Friday.

On Saturday, acting Police Commissioner Harold Phillip revealed that a police investigation was launched into reports of attacks on the media and that ASP Hunte of the Professional Standards Bureau was mandated to carry out the probe. Another media worker, Phil Britton of One Caribbean Media (OCM) and a female reporter of that company were also attacked by a person while seeking an interview on the compound of A & V Oil and Gas Limited last Wednesday.

Britton was yesterday still awaiting information from the police on when he will be called to be interviewed. The windshield of Britton’s private vehicle was smashed by a beer bottle last Wednesday and he was threatened while on official assignment for TV6 outside the A & V compound in Penal.

The matter was reported to the Penal police and sources revealed that officers were hesitant to take the report. However, sources revealed that an officer of the Penal Police Station who is allegedly a close relative of a person identified in the fake oil allegations, has been named as being one of the persons involved in the attacks against media workers.

The officer was supposed to be interviewed yesterday, but investigators decided that a few matters had to be sorted out before this officer was interviewed. Senior police officers said that if it is confirmed that a policeman was involved in assaulting media workers, this would be condemned in the strongest manner and also that the matter will not be swept under the carpet. On Sunday, both Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley and members of the Opposition condemned attacks against media workers.


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