Murder, Human Trafficking, Interceptions, Gun Arrests & Theft Charges from TCI Police
Man Murdered in Grand Turk; Homicide count to SEVEN for TCI
May 9th, At around 5:10am this morning, Monday 9th May 2022, a body of a man was found in Back Salina, Grand Turk. Given what is known so far, a murder investigation has been launched by RTCIPF Serious Crime Detectives.
ILLEGAL MIGRANTS MAKE MOTHER’S DAY LANDING in PROVO
May 8, At about 12:30 am on Sunday 8th May 2022 it was established that a sloop had landed at North west Point when a boat was found on the shore. It is believed, at this stage, that whilst the vessel was detected by the Coastal Rader Station, the vessel was too close to the coast to be intercepted by the RTCIPF Marine Branch, despite the Police Boat being in the area at the time.
A number of what are believed to be illegal migrants were seen on land in the North West point area. The Police and Immigration Enforcement were deployed to the area and the operation continues to locate and detain any persons from the landed vessel.
Police INTERCEPT second Sloop on Mother’s Day near Provo, THREE Children aboard
May 8, At around 8:30pm on Sunday 8th May 2022, the Coastal Radar Station alerted the Police Control.
Room that they were tracking a target seven miles off the coast of Providenciales.
The RTCIPF Marine Branch subsequently intercepted a boat carrying suspect illegal migrants at just after 9pm. The vessel and persons were detained and brought into South Dock. Forty-nine (49) persons, including three (3) children were handed over the Immigration Enforcement Team and taken to the Immigration Detention Centre
THIEF CAUGHT WITH STOLEN GOODS
May 9th, On Monday 9th May 2022, 31-year-old Wolbert Fergusson of Kew Town Providenciales, was formally charged with the offence of Burglary.
The offence was committed at an office located on the Leeward Highway.
The crime was solved shortly after it was committed, due to the vigilance and initiative of two off-duty Police Detectives who saw the suspect walking on the roadway, carrying a backpack in the early hours of Saturday 7th May, 2022.
The officers apprehended the man and conducted a stop and search on his person and the backpack. During the search, the officers discovered what appeared to be stolen goods.
Checks were made at buildings in the area for signs of a burglary, and a shattered glass window was discovered at an office building nearby.
Further inquiries were carried out which confirmed that the recovered items, were property that had been left secured in the office.
The off-duty Police officers are commended for their vigilance, which resulted in the arrest of the offender and the recovery of the stolen property.
The defendant appeared in court on Wednesday 11th May 2022.
PROVO MAN AGREES TO SEVEN YEARS IN PRISON FOR GUN & AMMO
May 9th, Leonardo Forbes of Blue Hills Providenciales was on Monday 9th May 2022, sentenced to seven (7) years in prison after he pleaded guilty to three counts of Keeping Firearms and Keeping Ammunition.
The charges stemmed from an incident that occurred on November 1st, 2021, when police received a report of a male being shot to the face in Blue Hills, Providenciales. Police responded to the location and commenced investigations that included the execution of a firearms warrant on the home of Forbes by RTCIPF Officers. Three (3) illegal handguns and 104 rounds of assorted ammunition were recovered.
Forbes was subsequently formally charged for Keeping Firearms and Keeping Ammunition, as well as, Inflicting Grievous Bodily Harm on another male. The latter charge was withdrawn as the victim requested no action against the accused. The matter has now concluded after a successful prosecution that secured a conviction.
Management of the Criminal Investigations Department expresses gratitude and commends the teams of officers from the various units for excellent teamwork and initiative; which resulted in Leonardo Forbes being successfully prosecuted and convicted but more importantly, the removal of three illegal firearms and over one hundred rounds of ammunition from the community.
US Coast Guard foils illegal entry of over 200 Illegal Migrants from Haiti
May 9, At around 9:15am Monday 9th May 2022, a sloop, believed to be heading to the Turks and Caicos Islands was identified by our close law enforcement partners, the US Coastguard around 21 miles south of the Turks and Caicos Islands.
The RTCIPF Marine Branch was deployed and the Immigration Enforcement were informed. However, the vessel was intercepted by a US Coastguard Cutter and the persons on board will be repatriated back to Haiti. The total number of persons on board was 212.
Commissioner of Police, Trevor Botting said, “I am grateful to our close collaborative partners from the US Coastguard who intercepted this large vessel which was believed to be headed to the Turks and Caicos Islands.
Through working together with the USCG and colleagues from the Bahamas Defence Force, we are deploying a strong collaborative defence of the borders and territorial waters of the TCI, Bahamas and the US.”
Interception thanks to Coastal Radar, 129 Haitians stopped
MAY 12th, at about 12:09am on Thursday 12th May 2022 the Coastal Radar Station detected a suspicious vessel around 6.7miles south of Providenciales and started to track it. Immediately, the Royal Turks and Caicos Islands Police Force Marine Branch made their way to the location and safely intercepted a vessel carrying irregular migrants. Following the stabilization of the boat, that was unsafe, taking on water and ensuring that the migrants were safe, the RTCIPF marine unit towed the boat to South Dock where its 129 passengers, 100 males and 29 females were safely unloaded.
They were then taken into custody by the Immigration Department.
Whilst managing this situation the Marine Branch were also dispatched to a second suspicious vessel, however as they intercepted it they found it to be local fishermen returning home.
Superintendent Martyn Ball said, “Once again we have safely intercepted another vessel that was overcrowded, unsafe and risking the lives of those on board. Again this demonstrates the professionalism and dedication of the Coastal Radar Station Team, the RTCIPF Marine Unit and our Immigration colleagues, working together to save lives and keep our borders here in the Turks and Caicos safe. I Would appeal to anyone if you have any information relating to such activity that you call Crime Stoppers free and anonymously on 1-800-8477, not only will you be saving lives but also supporting our national security.”
Tragic fire in Guyanese Dormitory, 19 lives lost
#Guyana, May 30, 2023 – Hearts are aching for the tragic loss of 19 children in a deadly school dormitory fire in Guyana, which a female student is suspected to have started after her cell phone was taken away by the dorm’s mother and a teacher according to a police statement.
The fire started while students were asleep; several of them were woken up by screams, according to the police.
It destroyed the Mahdia Secondary School and the 19 lives lost include 18 girls and a young boy.
However, despite the fact that when the firefighters arrived the building was already engulfed in flames, they were able to rescue 20 students by breaking down part of the building’s north eastern wall.
During the fire, which started in the bathroom and then consumed the whole building, police say 57 female students were in the dormitory which they described as a flat concrete building measuring about 100 feet by 40 feet, with barred windows.
Also, the dorm is said to have been locked and had covered windows which would have trapped the students.
However, authorities have not revealed whether the students had difficulty evacuating the building; but it is reported that the dorm administrator – who is suffering the loss of her five year old son, couldn’t locate the keys to unlock the door due to panic.
Those injured as well as those who died, mostly indigenous girls, as the school housed children from indigenous communities from the wider area, were taken to the hospital, some of them still in serious condition.
The teenage suspect, is also currently hospitalized with burns, is accused of threatening her attack after she was confronted and disciplined for being in a relationship with an older man, as reported by the Associated Press, hence the possible reason her phone was taken.
Authorities are now taking advice on whether to charge her, according to a government source who spoke to the AFP news agency.
Local Guyanese media reports that the blaze, which firefighters took over three hours to contain, was so severe that DNA testing was needed to identify some of the victims.
Mohamed Ifran Ali, Guyana’s President has declared three days of national mourning in response to the tragedy that occurred on Sunday May 21st, 2023.
Rape Trial adjourned to December
By Wilkie Arthur
Freelance Court Reporter
#TurksandCaicos, May 30, 2023 – Appearing on Tuesday May 23, before her ladyship the Hon. Tanya Lobban-Jackson was the accused Denardo Ewing for the rape of a female tourist.
The allegation dates back to July 2021. The alleged victim reported to police that she was ganged raped by males on the night in question in Providenciales. Ewing was the lone suspect charged; there had been reports however that TCI Police did make more than one arrest in connection to the alleged sexual assault.
The matter was listed for mention last week as Ewing’s attorney has filed an application to exclude certain evidence. The application will be heard at a later date and the defendant remains on bail pending his trial in December of this year.
Denardo Ewing is represented by Sheena Mair of F-Chambers Law firm.
Seven Year Old Corruption Case begins in October, says DPP
By Wilkie Arthur
Freelance Court Reporter
#TurksandCaicos, May 30, 2023 – Arrested in October 2016, Vicki Wilson, formerly of the Providenciales Employment Service of the Immigration Department will still face trial for alleged acts of corruption in the work place. Wilson on Tuesday May 23, 2023 appeared in court; represented by Mr. Oliver Smith, KC, who appeared by video link.
The Court learned that discussions had started between the office of the DPP and King’s Counsel Smith on behalf of the accused related to the matter being disposed of or dropped altogether. However, those talks fell through and the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions has advised the matter proceed to trial.
In a 2017 report, TCI Police informed: “Following a joint investigation between the RT&CIPF Financial Crimes Unit and the Integrity Commission, a 48 year old female of Providenciales was formally charged and caution for 13 counts of uttering forged document, one count of corruption and one count of use of criminal property. The investigation commenced in November 2016 after number of allegations of Forged Turks and Caicos Islands Work Permits being issued to a number of persons within the Haitian and Dominican Communities.”
Alleged co-conspirator and co-accused Shadika Green was in 2019 found guilty of the charges by a jury.
A trial date for Vicki Wilson is now fixed for commencement on October 30, 2023. Her bail has been extended to that date.
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