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Cops intercept would-be yacht club robbers

...7 in custody

By Alexander Bruzual

Seven men are now in police custody after they were caught ‘red-handed’ trying to steal fishing boat engines valued at over $100,000 from the T&T Yacht Club, Carenage.
Police reported that at about 3.45 p.m., a party of officers from the Western Division Task Force led by Insp Mohammed, with assistance from Cpl Campbell and PC Kernanhan, among others, were on mobile patrol along the Western Main Road, when they made a routine stop onto the compound of the T&T Yacht Club.
Following their regular procedures, the officers called out to the security officers stationed at the building. However, when they got no response the policemen became suspicious.
The officers exited their vehicles, and upon entering the compound, they found three security officers tied up inside the guard booth. The security personnel appeared to have been beaten about their bodies, police sources said.
The officers then made further checks on the compound and they soon found an abandoned van filled with several engines taken from fishing boats which were in the yard.
The officers then observed a group of men running to the back of the compound, they gave chase. The suspects ran to the foreshore, and attempted to hide from the police, and because of this, the Western Division officers requested assistance from the Air Support Unit.
Within minutes, National Security helicopters swept the coastline and they assisted in the capturing of all seven suspects.
Speaking to the media yesterday, general manager of the Yacht Club, Chris Burford, praised the efforts of Insp Mohammed and his team as it resulted in the speedy capture of the would-be robbers.
“They managed to swing in the gate just to do their routine check with us like they normally do and they spotted the guys. The police immediately engaged them. They all then fled on to the shoreline. The police then got their helicopter involved which was very, very helpful in spotting the guys running along the shore and I am glad to report that all seven people have been held by the police. Thank God nobody was hurt.
“I just want to thank the police first and foremost for their invaluable help because they were really on the ball. The police are doing a good job...there are some negative comments around but based on what I have seen here this morning, I think the police need 100 points for their performance,” Burford said.
Burford also warned criminals about traversing the yacht club as he noted that another man was held on Tuesday afternoon in an unrelated incident for stealing two batteries from a boat.
“Again, we got him. So we are trying to send the message out: don’t come and mess in the club because we will catch you,” Burford said.
Snr Supt Ishmael David yesterday praised the efforts of all who were involved in the capture of the suspects including his officers, the Air Support Unit, and members of the public.
“I want to commend them all on behalf of the Commissioner of Police. The members of the public who would have helped, the Air Support Unit, and the Divisional Task Force officers. They all did an excellent job.
“So thank God, the Commander in Chief, for leading the troops, leading the officers to the yacht club at that exact point in time. And I would also want to let the criminals know that there is a zero tolerance for crime it this jurisdiction,” David said.
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