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Call to regulate security industry after $3m heist

By Carla Bridglal carla.bridglal@trinidadexpress.com

Legislation governing the operation of security services is urgently needed, especially after last Wednesday’s deadly $3 million highway heist involving a security van, Trinidad and Tobago Chamber of Industry and Commerce chief executive Catherine Kumar said yesterday. 

“The legislation has gone nowhere really and our call as the chamber is, given what has happened recently, that Government take this up as a very urgent issue,” Kumar told the audience at a seminar on fraud at the Chamber Building, Westmoorings. 

Last Wednesday, at least $3 million destined for the Tobago branches of four of the country’s major commercial banks was stolen when robbers held up a Sentinel Security van in Trincity; Asst Estate Supt Bert Clarke, 59, whose funeral was held on Monday, was killed during the robbery.

Kumar noted that, given the crime situation in Trinidad and Tobago, there has been a proliferation of security firms in the country, and “we know all too well not all of them follow proper practices”.

She said legislation was going to call for best practice in the industry, and put regulations in place for operations, training and allowing security personnel a firearm. 

“(Some of these officers) are not well paid, don’t get benefits so they are in positions where they can easily commit fraud. They are guarding our premises and have access to our goods,” she said. 

Jeremy Jones, head of enterprise services technology and enterprise services for RBC Financial (Caribbean) Ltd, said as an industry, the banking sector continues to engage with its security operators about protocol and procedure. 

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