PCA investigates alleged firearms user's licences racket

 Police Complaints Authority director David West. File photo -
Police Complaints Authority director David West. File photo -

The Police Complaints Authority (PCA) has initiated an investigation into reports of the practices surrounding the dissemination of firearm user’s licences by members of the Trinidad and Tobago Police Service.

The investigation is being carried out pursuant to Section 26 of the PCA Act, Chapter 15.05.

In a brief statement on Saturday, the PCA, led by director David West, said, “As an independent oversight body, the PCA is committed to ensuring that no police officer acts above the rule of law and empowering the citizenry to report incidents of police misconduct and/or criminal activity.”

The statement came days after a newspaper report which revealed that former judge Stanley John had been retained by the Police Service Commission to investigate allegations that senior members of the service are involved in a licence-for-sale racket in the granting of firearm user’s licences.

It was reported that from January 1 to July 31, 2021, a total of 1,891 firearm user’s licences were issued by the Commissioner of Police and over 44 per cent were issued to the protective services including police, the Defence Force and prisons.

It is alleged some businessmen, including gun dealers and firearms instructors, are also involved in the alleged racket.

Acting Police Commissioner Gary Griffith, currently on vacation, has not commented on the issue.

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