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Chris Forbes: TCIs worst criminal gets dramatic relocation to Maximum Security in the UK

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#TurksandCaicosIslands – January 13, 2021 – When Christopher Forbes recently took a Covid-19 PCR test, he likely thought the negative result gave him the all clear as being among those sickened by a coronavirus outbreak at the prison facility in Grand Turk.  Turns out it was also his all clear to be carted off in a carefully planned and flawlessly executed transfer not to another site in the tropical Caribbean, but to an impenetrable, maximum security facility for a man of his heinous criminal nature in the United Kingdom.

In a media statement the Governor, the Minister of Home Affairs and the Prison Superintendent opened up, ever so slightly about the shocking removal of infamous Forbes, who is a Turks and Caicos Islander but originally from Grand Bahama Island in The Bahamas.

“Today, Christopher Forbes a prisoner in HMP Grand Turk is being transferred to a prison in the UK.  This is where he will serve the remainder of his sentence.  He is being escorted by members of the Her Majesty Prison and Probation Service. On arrival, he will reside in a category A prison in England,” said David Bowden, Prison Superintendent.

PrisonPhone website published: There are eight category A prisons in the UK.  The facilities are high security prisons where the most dangerous and difficult to manage prisoners are kept.  These prisons hold some of the most notorious criminals in the UK, many of whom are serving life sentences. These prisons are designed to make escape impossible for the prisoners, and are commonly described as ‘high security’ or ‘maximum security’ establishments.

It is the second transfer of high maintenance inmates in recent months for the Turks and Caicos prison system under the new superintendent.  Residents seem relieved at the steady and sturdy push toward prison reform.

The Governor, His Excellency Nigel Dakin, stated, “the stability of Her Majesty’s Prison is a critical piece in our strategy towards safeguarding national security and we will continue to exercise all avenues available to us in order to accomplish our national goals and secure our institutions and our communities. I am grateful to the UK Government for their support in this matter.”  

Forbes, who is easily the worst felon in Turks and Caicos history was convicted of the brutal double homicides in 2016 of Yuneiry Veras in April and Sorineida Moreno Arias in July. Both women from the Dominican Republic were 26-years old when they met their deaths.  Both were sexually assaulted, beaten and brutalized and left partially clothed in remote areas of northwest Providenciales.

Search parties mobilised by the Dominican community found both victims.  The deaths incited protests which vociferously demanded an arrest by TCI Police.  The activism worked and in August 2016 Forbes was arrested. Found, living in plain sight at his girlfriend’s house in the residential community of Millennium Heights.

It was overwhelming DNA evidence which was the undoing of this cold-blooded, sloppy killer.  Christopher Forbes’ DNA was found under the finger nails, on clothing, a towel and in a condom left at the crime scene.  Due to the struggle for her life, genetic material of the killer was detected in the jewelry his last victim – Sorineida – a mother of two young children; the jury heard how she had peeled away Forbes’ skin which was found in her rings. 

Additionally, CCTV cameras captured Forbes’ vehicle picking up a victim in Five Cays. Phone records revealed Forbes was in contact with both women on the nights they went missing and were murdered and a boast, scribbled in the passport of the first victim – Yuneiry Veras – and found in the area of Sweet T’s restaurant was the final piece of the puzzle; police moved in and made the arrest.

In prison, Christopher Forbes was a menace and disturbingly, a jailhouse rock star. 

A string of prison violations for abuses against prison superintendents and deputy superintendents led to at least two convictions.  Forbes regularly made appearances on Facebook live, had his own stash of expensive liquors like Hennessy, a big screen television, gold jewelry, expensive sunglasses and appeared to be having a ball as a ‘baller’, high on marijuana while living a glamourous life in TCI prison and on the public’s dime.

Meanwhile the families and friends of Sorienda and Yuniery remain traumatized by the vicious killings, which were unprovoked and described by a juror as serial killings by a dangerous man who should spend the rest of his living years behind bars.

In 2020, an historic ruling by Justice Tanya Lobban-Jackson achieved that feat; Christopher Forbes received a double life sentence without any chance for parole.  Now around 38-years old, Christopher Forbes will have to settle into one of eight category A prisons in the United Kingdom. 

“I am most grateful to the transfer team from the UK.  I have also been very impressed by the inter-governmental departments, working very closely with the MoHA, to make this transfer as efficient as it was,” added Superintendent Bowden, who categorised Forbes as a high risk inmate who posed a great risk to the development of HMP Prison as a safe, secure and rehabilitative institution.

The transfer of the prisoner was approved by UK Ministers, as permissible under UK legislation, and supported by the Governor and Premier of the Turks and Caicos Islands.  

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Education

TCI Agriculture launches Plant Clinic

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By Dana Malcolm

Staff Writer

 

#TurksandCaicos, June 25, 2022 – These days anything can be online, even a plant clinic! The Turks and Caicos Islands Department of Agriculture wants to help budding and experienced farmers with any plant issues they may have and their new Online Plant Clinic is their solution to help as many Islanders as possible.

Launched on Thursday, June 16 the clinic will operate through Facebook. Individuals with sick plants or pest issues will be required to take a photo of the issue and upload that photo to the department of Agriculture’s Facebook page.

Answers to issues will be given once a month, on every third Thursday, via a public video so all Islanders can have access. The launch was attended by Chief Plant Protection Officer-CPPO Roneta Huntley Thomas, Director of Agriculture Wilhelmina Kissoonsingh, Minister of Agriculture Josephine Connolly, and Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Agriculture Mrs. Cheryl Ann Jones.

Connolly urged residents to “grow your own food and grow TCI.”

Attendees of the launch were allowed to participate in games trying to identify different diseases for a chance at prizes. Residents can now immediately start sending in their photos on the Facebook page.

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Caribbean News

138 illegals add to the over 900 migrants captured by TCI Joint Forces

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FILE PHOTO

#TurksandCaicos, June 25, 2022 – RTCIPF Marine Operations Centre and partners continue to work together to protect our borders and keep TCI secure.

During the evening of Wednesday 22nd June 2022 the RTCIPF Marine Operations Centre identified a target of interest and immediately started to track the vessel around 5 miles North West of Providenciales travelling at around 7 knots.

The operator immediately updated colleagues within the Royal Turks and Caicos Marine Branch who made their way to the location and intercepted a vessel containing irregular migrants. Following a delicate, coordinated operation with the necessary stabilization of the vessel which was unsafe, severely overcrowded and the occupants were without life vests, the RTCIPF Marine Unit was joined by a second RTCIPF Marine crew and a third vessel crewed with TCI Regiment to support the delicate operation.

The vessel was carefully offloaded at sea to ensure the safety of the occupants and then the boat was towed to South Dock where it arrived around 4:45am with a total of 138 persons, 98 males and 40 female including 1 juvenile, who were then taken into custody by the Immigration Department. One male needed immediate medical attention in relation to a leg injury sustained.

Superintendent Martyn Ball said, “Again working with partners we have safely intercepted another vessel that was desperately overcrowded, unsafe and risked the lives of those on board. It continues to demonstrate the professionalism and dedication of the RTCIPF Marine Unit, working together with colleagues in the Marine Operations Centre, TCI Regiment, TCI Immigration and Health to save lives and keep our borders here in the Turks and Caicos Islands safe.

In the last couple of months over 900 individuals on 9 dangerous and unseaworthy vessels have been intercepted here in the TCI.

I would appeal to anyone if you have any information relating to such activity that you call CrimeStoppers free and anonymously on 1-800-8477, not only will you be saving lives but also supporting our national security here in the Turks and Caicos Islands.”

 

Caption: FILE PHOTO

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Caribbean News

Turks & Caicos Airline becomes first International flight at Ian Fleming in Jamaica

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By Dana Malcolm

Staff Writer

 

#Jamaica, June 25, 2022 – As the Turks and Caicos and Jamaica celebrated a new connection on June 16th as Intercaribbean Airways launched their newest flight to Boscobel, St Mary, half an hour from the famous city of Ocho Rios on Jamaica’s North Coast.

The Ian Fleming Airport is named for the famous author who penned the James Bond series just miles away from the airport. Never one to miss a theme, InterCaribbean dubbed their flight the JY 007.

The 007 departed Providenciales at 9:30 am Thursday (June 16) with Lyndon Gardiner, Chairman of InterCaribbean Airways; Trevor Sadler, InterCaribbean Airways CEO; Chris and Kayon Stokes of NCS Money Services; Team Beaches TCI, some media namely SunTCI and Magnetic Media as well as a few Jamaicans anxious to get home.

The 007, Ian Fleming Airport’s first international commercial flight, was received in Jamaica with much fanfare.  It was met by a Jamaican delegation including Audley Shaw, Minister of Transport for Jamaica and Edmund Bartlett, Jamaica’s Tourism Minister and a cheerful water cannon spurt to sweeten the arrival of the first international flight at Ian Fleming.

Bartlett was enthusiastic about the prospects that Inter-Caribbean was bringing to Jamaica.

“The presence today of this inaugural flight from a Caribbean island into Boscobel is a bigger statement than what has been made because what it does is to put together the idea of connectivity in a material way. It is how we as a region are going to be able to connect with each other in a way that brings economic value and prosperity to each other and that’s the power of this movement that begins today.”

The minister noted that Tourism was a booming business if only we were aware of how to take charge of it.

“We are about ideas and how to convert ideas into things that have a material value, we are the most consumption-driven activity on planet earth. “ he added “the next critical consideration that has to be looked at …is that we need a single visa regime for touristic purposes that can be provided for visitors coming into your space… a CARICOM visa that allows you entry into all the CARICOM countries.”

Gardiner expressed his excitement for the venture telling the media,“Only the sun covers the Caribbean better than we do.” He also told the gathered press. “We will now have the ability to bring people from across the Caribbean, whether it be for business, pleasure, or furthering multi-destination vacations, by offering Boscobel residents and visitors direct service across the Caribbean and vice versa.”

InterCaribbean Airways will run their flight monthly initially and then upgrade to weekly flights. It would be the third flight between Turks and Caicos and Jamaica; already Kingston and Montego Bay are serviced by the airline based in Providenciales, TCI.

American Airlines and QCAS Aero are also scheduled to begin flights to the Ian Fleming International this year.

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