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Nov 2, 2012

Weak areas such as prosecution branch and investigation to be bolstered

John Saldivar

The new crime strategy will certainly bring more arrests, but will it bring more convictions? With only twenty-six arrests for the hundred plus murders that occurred last year, even if all suspects were convicted, the conviction rate would still be dismal. But the Ministry intends to strengthen intelligence gathering, investigation and the police prosecution branch.


John Saldivar, Minister of National Security

“The Ministry of National Security acknowledges that the three weakest areas in the police department continues to be intelligence gathering, investigation and prosecution. The major crime and their frequent spikes like that one we are currently experiencing has drawn much of our resources and attention to the everyday policing patrolling and crime prevention efforts. In prosecution, for example, core reasons for the weaknesses include: a lack of training; routinely transferring the most skilled prosecutors from the department once they are promoted from sergeants; inadequate supervision and review of case files prior to hearing; inadequate preparation and follow up with witnesses; resources such as transportation and computers to aide in efficient delivery of services. It is clear that if we do not treat prosecution as a career department and allow for skilled prosecutors at all ranks to be maintained in the department, it will continue to lose the benefit of our specially trained personnel. It is with this in mind that the cabinet recently approved the hiring of an attorney to head the prosecution branch. And current police prosecutors will be asked to decide if they want to permanently stay in prosecution or return to regular police duties. We are determined to fix the police prosecution branch. Going hand in hand with prosecution is investigation. In an era where the public has lost fate in the justice system, one in which witnesses frequently recant their statements due to intimidation or far worse are murdered; more reliance must be placed on intelligence investigations and the tools must be secured to enable such. Presently the investigations department has at their disposal, a scenes of crime department, a crime information management database, a fingerprint identification system, cell phone and sim-card diagnostic equipment, computer forensic tools, a small network of cameras and most recently—courtesy of the Canadians—the most advanced ballistic forensic equipment available. A DNA lab is soon to be added to this list.”


Saldivar also mentioned that the police has also implemented its Christmas special duties program early this year. That means an increase in about twenty-five percent more police and B.D.F. personnel will be on the streets. They won’t be there just to catch the gunmen, but they will also arrest people who commit quality of life crimes.

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4 Responses for “Weak areas such as prosecution branch and investigation to be bolstered”

  1. Bear says:

    A friend of mine in Los Angeles, a prosecutor, in fact, told me a couple years back that his boss, District Attorney Steve Cooley of Los Angeles, offered training support for our law enforcement in a letter to Sedi. He said Sedi never responded. I wonder why he never accepted free help to fight crime?

  2. Pedro Dolmo says:

    I hope at least some belizean legal minds will get jobs as they are many people who have finish law school and cant get no jobs as the jobs are given to jamaicans guyanese etc just sad

  3. Name Withheld says:

    @ Bear, I believe that we all must agree that Mr. Sedi (a multimillionaire) never accept the offer of free help because he very well knew if the police force would become more professional and get better arrest/conviction rate the criminals will think twice before committing crimes and less crimes means less money for the dirty conscienceless criminal attorney.
    shame on you Sedi, remember what does it profit a man to gain the world and loses his soul?

  4. ceo says:

    Words like weak should never be used to describe any branch of your government.

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