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'Changes coming in Police Service'

By Nikita Braxton-Benjamin

The New Year will see several changes in the Trinidad and Tobago Police Service, Minister of National Security Jack Warner said yesterday.

Speaking at an awards function for Central Division police officers, Warner said several proposals will be raised with the Commissioner of Police (CoP) Stephen Williams, including a move to have random declaration of assets by police officers.

"There are policemen who are corrupt and who are giving you guys a bad name," Warner said.

He told officers that he had already suggested to Williams to use universities to train officers.

Warner said the manpower has been provided with 5,000 special reserve officers.

"When universities close for three months...put your officers there and train them... You have beds, you have kitchens, you have food, you have cooks, use them," Warner said.

The Minister said that coastal borders will be better protected as a team will be travelling to view boats to assist with coastal patrol.

"We are sending a team to see them in Colombia and (they) leave on January 5 to (also) go to Belgium and China to look at them," Warner said.

He also mentioned that officers will receive new bullet-proof vests, firearms, customised vehicles and called on the police to move in on drug dens and brothels for 2013.

Warner said that new uniforms were expected on stream from today.

He said changes will be coming for municipal police officers in the form of better training and regulations, allowing for them to be able to transfer to various police stations.

There will also be consultations throughout the country to find ways to fight crime.

Warner is expected to release crime statistics for T&T today.

But Senior Superintendent Deodath Dulalchan of Central Division gave stats for his area yesterday, saying 70 illegal firearms were recovered, more than 1,500 rounds of live ammunition found, several kilogrammes of cocaine seized and 2,000 people arrested for varying offences.

He said the division has seen a 43.75 per cent decrease in crime in December 2012 as compared to the same month in 2011.

Warner gave high praise to all officers, including Dulalchan and Superintendent Johnny Abraham, during the awards function, which was also attended by Chaguanas Mayor Orlando Nagessar.

Thirty-five police officers received tokens, including Assistant Commissioner of Police Glenda Jennings-Smith.

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