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Police take down alleged shooters; Charge man with gun and ammo possession & deny “fake news”



By Deandrea Hamilton



#TurksandCaicos, May 19, 2022 – Someone reported shots fired from a red car on Leeward Highway on Tuesday and that drew out at least three units of the Royal TCI Police.

The response resulted in an arrest of two men whom many captured on their cell phones plunked down on the ground with hands cuffed at the back.

At the time motorists and passersby had no clue what was going on but a police report issued later on Tuesday informed there was a reckless firing off of a gun from the car and it demanded the tactical unit and investigative department to the scene.

Trevor Botting, Police Commissioner informed: “The reported incident on the Leeward Highway where it is believed that a firearm was discharged recklessly, was responded to by a number of Police Units, including members of the Tactical Unit and Investigations Teams.”

It was around 12:20pm that the shots were heard, believed to have come from the red Suzuki Swift which was seen in photos and videos of the take down.

“A short time later, a vehicle was stopped and two persons arrested. A firearm and ammunition were subsequently recovered. I commend the work of the attending officers and those supporting in the Police Control Room for a coordinated and focused response. The officers and the staff of the RTCIPF remain committed and focused on protecting our communities and removing guns from the streets of the TCI.”

Five Cays Man faces gun and ammo charge

Police have identified the suspect arrested early Sunday morning, around 1:30am in the stop and search.

“This arrest and charges reflect the diligent and targeted work of officers who are working to keep our communities safe. We are committed to getting guns and those people who carry them off the streets and we are grateful for the support we are getting from the public. I urge you to tell us what you know about guns and gun crime to support us in fighting crime.”

The female said to be in the car, in the original report on the arrest, appears to have been exonerated.  She was not named in the update.

Police had informed that the male in the stop and search tossed and object over the car, that object was later identified as a gun, said the report.

Gino Bernadin of Five Cays will face the Magistrate to answer to charges of gun and ammunition possession.

No Truth to Police Sex Crimes Rumor

On Tuesday, Police also denied there was any truth to a report that senior officers were to be charged with serious sex crimes.

The statement said the Force was disgusted by the social media post.

Commissioner Trevor Botting said:  “I am frankly appalled that someone would circulate such a terrible untruth, an untruth that has no basis at all. Misinformation such as this was no doubt intended to discredit the Force and the hard working officers and staff within in and those responsible should hang their heads in shame.”

He also said he was glad people in TCI had the good sense not to believe the “fake news” item.

“Thankfully, most people on the TCI see through such disgraceful and divisive actions and continue to support policing in the work we do.”

Caribbean News

US Milestone Celebrated



#Jamaica, June 30, 2022 – This year marks the United States of America’s (USA) 246th anniversary of Independence, and the milestone was celebrated with a reception on June 28 at the Jamaica Pegasus Hotel in New Kingston.  The event also featured the traditional United States Marine Corps Colour Guard ceremony.

Justice Minister, Hon. Delroy Chuck, who represented the Government of Jamaica, extended congratulations to the Government and people of the United States (US) on this significant achievement.

“The Government of Jamaica is pleased to join in commemorating this milestone with our American friends and partners. Today we celebrate a nation that continues to give practical meaning to the declaration of Independence and the vision of the founding fathers for the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. These tenets have been central to the growth and development of the Union since 1776 and its transformation as a global leader,” he said.

For his part, US Ambassador to Jamaica, His Excellency Nick Perry, said the countries’ partnership has been rewarding, and expressed the United States’ continued commitment to strengthening the cooperation between the nations.

“On behalf of the United States Mission to Jamaica, thank you for joining us as we celebrate the 246th anniversary of the Independence of the United States of America. As we celebrate America’s independence, we also celebrate 60 years of partnership between our two countries. Together we have promoted democracy, human rights, and shared security concerns,” he said.

Jamaica established diplomatic relations with the United States in 1962, following its independence from the United Kingdom.

The partnership focuses on reducing corruption; increasing transparency and good governance; fostering Jamaican participation in regional security efforts; strengthening basic education; and increasing energy resiliency.

Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, the US has provided more than US$16.4 million as well as donations of vaccines to assist Jamaica’s containment measures.

Additionally, over the last 12 months, the United States has collaborated with the Ministry of Labour and Social Security to issue a record number of H2 visas, bringing critical, temporary labour to the US, while providing jobs for thousands of Jamaicans that resulted in millions of dollars in remittances.

Significantly, the Peace Corps, which is also celebrating 60 years of partnership with Jamaica this year, will resume its operations on the island beginning September, following a two-year hiatus due to the pandemic.


Contact: Rochelle Williams

Release: JIS

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Caribbean News

Positive Outlook for Caribbean Tourism



Shanieka Smith

Features Writer


 June, 30, 2022 – The president of the Caribbean Hotel & Tourism Association (CHTA), Nicola Madden-Greig, says tourism in the Caribbean is recovering faster than expected.

While presenting at the CHTA ‘Caribbean Tourism Fireworks’, she said the Caribbean travel and tourism sector experienced the second-fastest recovery of all regions in 2021. Travel and Tourism have contributed to the gross domestic product (GDP) by 36.6 per cent. She added that they have recovered over 311,000 jobs.

“That is really a testament to how fast Caribbean tourism has been able to come back into play,” said Madden-Greig.

January and February were not as successful because of the uprising of the COVID-19 omicron variant. Travel heightened between March and June, and Madden-Greig reported that summer looks promising and that they “expect that winter 2022-2023 will also be strong”.

“For the June to August period, [the Caribbean is] ahead of our 2019 airline arrivals in terms of what is forecast and on the books by upwards of two per cent,” she said.

The CHTA’s Caribbean Tourism Fireworks is what the trade association uses to communicate regional tourism performance and outlook survey results. In addition to the performance reports, other topics were discussed including the recognition of Caribbean tourism’s resilience; that investments by the tourism industry in capital improvements, health safety and product value are underpinning the region’s tourism recovery; and that labour shortages present immediate and long-term opportunities.

CHTA urged employers, governments, education and training institutions to recruit new employees and prepare communities for careers, employment and ownership opportunities within the sector.

Also present at the CHTA Caribbean Tourism Firework were CHTA’s acting CEO and Director General, Vanessa Ledesma, Jamaican hotelier Clifton Reader, and the chair of CHTA’s Advocacy Committee.

While the speakers agreed that intra-Caribbean travel has great opportunities, they share that there are connectivity issues and issues with preserving, protecting and enhancing the region’s natural resources.

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Caribbean News

Sandals Resorts International Appoints Rachel McLarty as Corporate Director of Communications & Public Relations



Communications Executive Rejoins Brand After Tenure at Distinguished Jamaican Law Firm


MONTEGO BAY, JAMAICA, June 15, 2022 – Sandals Resorts International recently  announced the appointment of Rachel McLarty to Corporate Director of Communications & Public Relations, overseeing the company’s corporate communication efforts and public relations initiatives for the Sandals Resorts and Beaches Resorts brands throughout the Caribbean. Reporting to Executive Chairman Adam Stewart and CEO Gebhard Rainer, McLarty returns to the organization after a ten-year hiatus where she previously held the position of Group Director of Corporate Relations.

“We are in a moment of tremendous momentum and require a skilled, expert hand to navigate through what will be an upcoming decade of unprecedented growth for the organization,” said Adam Stewart, Executive Chairman of SRI. “Rachel McLarty is that voice in the Caribbean, and we are thrilled to welcome her back to the company as we celebrate our 40th anniversary and plan for the next forty.”

McLarty, who will be based in the Kingston headquarters of Sandals Resorts International, will lead a talented team of public relations and communication professionals in Jamaica and throughout the entire Caribbean region. During her first tenure with SRI, McLarty served as Group Director of Corporate Relations for the organization for a period of five years, beginning in 2006. Prior to rejoining the company, she served as an attorney-at-law at Myers, Fletcher & Gordon, one of the largest law firms in Jamaica. She is deeply committed to improving and developing Caribbean communities, currently sitting as Chairman of the Board for St. Andrew High School for Girls and the SOS Children’s Villages in Jamaica.

“Sandals Resorts International remains the brand standard for Caribbean organizations, and it is an honour to rejoin the company at such a prolific time,” said McLarty. “And while I have certainly followed the tremendous success of the brands in the last decade, I have remained even more impressed by the organization’s continued commitment to the Caribbean, the region we all call home. I look forward to the incredible work to be done.”

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