Caribbean News Now!

About Us Contact Us


Jump to your country or territory of interest

Advertise with us

Reach our daily visitors from around the Caribbean and throughout the world. Click here for rates and placements.


Submit news and opinion for publication


Click here to receive our daily regional news headlines by email.


Click here to browse our extensive archives going back to 2004

Also, for the convenience of our readers and the online community generally, we have reproduced the complete Caribbean Net News archives from 2004 to 2010 here.

Climate Change Watch

The Caribbean is especially vulnerable to rising sea levels brought about by global warming. Read the latest news and information here...


Follow Caribbean News Now on Twitter
Connect with Caribbean News Now on Linkedin

News from the Caribbean:

Back To Today's News

Bahamas PM pledges to escalate war on criminals
Published on January 2, 2014 Email To Friend    Print Version

By Taneka Thompson
Nassau Guardian Senior Reporter

NASSAU, Bahamas -- Prime Minister Perry Christie has revealed more than 20 initiatives the Cabinet has agreed to as part of the government’s effort to “escalate” the war on crime in The Bahamas.

However, many of the ideas are already in place or are plans the government previously promised to implement.

Prime Minister Perry Christie delivers a statement on initiatives that The Bahamas government intends to implement in order to deter crime. TORRELL GLINTON
At a press conference at the Cabinet Office on Monday afternoon, the prime minister read a statement but did not take questions to explain the crime plan.

Chief among the initiatives are plans to increase police saturation patrols in crime hot spots and possibly reinstating the 12-hour shift for police officers, Christie said on Monday.

The government announced the 12-hour shift in September but it was soon met with resistance from the Police Staff Association.

“Reinstatement of the 12-hour policing shift, possibly on new terms, is now the subject of intense study and discussion,” said Christie, who was flanked by members of his Cabinet.

“A further announcement on this subject can be expected once the necessary consultations within law enforcement have been completed.”

Christie spoke to reporters not long after concluding a special Cabinet meeting on crime.

The meeting came in response to a “heinous” drive-by shooting at a park in Fox Hill on Friday that killed four people and injured seven others.

Christie said the government is satisfied that those responsible will soon be brought to justice.

As part of the government’s plan, Christie said police will also target prolific offenders, especially those on bail, and establish a gang unit.

He said his administration is concerned about the number of people who are charged with serious crimes and granted bail.

“This is a major problem in the war against crime,” he said.

To counteract this, Christie said the government is prepared to introduce legislation that will restrict judges’ ability to grant bail for those charged with violent crimes or gun charges.

Christie said the Ministry of Works has been given instructions to “work around the clock” to complete the refurbishment of additional criminal courts so that 10 facilities will be able to operate simultaneously.

He said this should expedite criminal cases and reduce the number of people granted bail for serious offenses.

“The courts will be properly resourced in additional ways so as to eliminate delays and postponements,” said Christie. However, he did not elaborate on this pledge.

Christie said Operation Ceasefire will mount “aggressive” initiatives which include the expansion of the capabilities of the Royal Bahamas Police Force’s Situation Room to collect and analyze data; outsourcing the repair and maintenance of police cars so the entire RBPF fleet is operational; improving the EMT program; appointing new judges and public defenders and improving intelligence gathering capabilities.

The government will also expand New Providence’s CCTV coverage; expand the use of reserve officers; accelerate the training of police recruits; expand the use of plainclothes officers and adopt a “strike force” strategy.

Other plans include the introduction of legislation aimed at career criminals with stiffer penalties for gun crimes and trafficking, witness intimidation and other serious crimes.

The government is also considering a gun amnesty; buy back, exchange or bounty and a special court for firearm cases, Christie said.

The Ingraham administration set up a dedicated gun court in January 2011.

Christie said the Ministry of Works, through Urban Renewal, will clean vacant lots to remove the spaces where criminals hide weapons.

The country has recorded 118 murders for the year and there are widespread worries about other serious crimes as well.

Christie said the government will be relentless in its crime fight.

“The government of The Bahamas will not compromise itself in its efforts to relentlessly fight this scourge of crime,” he said.

“...So we expect therefore on a continued basis to enlarge our reach, both from the point of view of policing and from the point of view of addressing the environmental challenges that possibly act as an incubator for crimes of anger.”

Republished with permission of the Nassau Guardian
Reads: 2387

Click here to receive daily news headlines from Caribbean News Now!



No comments on this topic yet. Be the first one to submit a comment.


Send us your comments!  

Send us your comments on this article. All fields are required.

For your contribution to reach us, you must (a) provide a valid e-mail address and (b) click on the validation link that will be sent to the e-mail address you provide.  If the address is not valid or you don't click on the validation link, we will never see it!

Your Name:

Your Email:

(Validation required)

Enter Code

User comments posted on this website are the sole views and opinions of the comment author and are not representative of Caribbean News Now or its staff. Caribbean News Now accepts no liability and will not be held accountable for user comments.
Caribbean News Now reserves the right to remove, edit or censor any comments. Any content that is considered unsuitable, unlawful or offensive, includes personal details, advertises or promotes products, services or websites or repeats previous comments will not be approved.
Before posting, please refer to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

Other Headlines:

Regional Sports: