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Sep 12, 2017

Are Police Responsible for Rise in Gang Rivalry?

Marco Vidal

Did the police department intentionally turn a blind eye to certain criminal elements and allowed them to carry on with illicit activity in return for keeping the peace in Belize City?  It’s an opinion that is shared by some, however, the truth of the matter is that the crackdown on the local marijuana trade seems to be rousing the gangs and rivalries are once again erupting across the Old Capital.

 

Supt. Marco Vidal, Regional Commander, Eastern Division South

“Currently the situation in some areas is very tense because the rivalries have erupted and we intend to continue with our operations to ensure that we can nip it in the bud.”

 

Reporter

“So the relative peace which prevailed in the city over the weekend, the relative peace, was, would you say a consequence of specialized law enforcement tactics, operations, strategies?”

 

Supt. Marco Vidal

“Certainly we have to attribute it to a strategy because the strategy would have been developed based on what we were foreseeing and what would have eventually played out.  As you know, there was this mass hysteria that a number of things would have happened, so there were certain things being done in tandem with the operations that were being carried out throughout the events leading from the J’ouvert all the way to the Tenth and they continue as we speak.”

 

Reporter

“Sir, you said earlier that the rivalries have erupted so there’s a lot of tension.  I know this has been asked in other press conferences but you’ve conceded that the rivalries have erupted.  Would you say it is due to or it is owing to the difference in strategy, difference in approaches taken by yourself as opposed to the previous commander who was constantly involved and advertising mediation activities which you have said that the state has no mediation to do.”

 

Supt. Marco Vidal

“Right.  Let me answer you in context.  First of all, the mediations have not ended, despite what again you may have seen or read on social media.  The mediation has not changed, that continues, just that it is within the body that is responsible for doing mediation objectively.  In terms of any peace having been between whatever period you want to put it, as journalists, if you would go to the very people who speak about peace, you would know that there was no peace and there was a number of underlying issues that prevailed during that same time.  My policy is that I don’t give any persons a break in terms of breaking the law.  I will not consider it, I will not do that.  If you are committing an offense you will face the consequences of that offense and that’s my proposition.  If the criminals are not happy with that then we will enforce the law and that’s it.”

 

Reporter

“Are you alluding to the widely held perception that certain groups were allowed to thrive in the marijuana trade while others weren’t allowed to thrive in that trade under the previous commander?”

 

Supt. Marco Vidal

“Exactly, and you obviously have your information from within… and you would have known that there was some perception, if you may, that there were some persons allowed certain things and others not allowed to do the very same thing.  My position and my strategy is that it is across the board.  You commit an offense and you will face the consequences for that offense.”

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Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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1 Response for “Are Police Responsible for Rise in Gang Rivalry?”

  1. Rod says:

    What a corrupt pm and gov.

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