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Police: ‘No one can exclude us’

Police: ‘No one can exclude us’

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The Royal St. Vincent and the Grenadines Police Force has jurisdiction everywhere in St. Vincent and the Grenadines, including the Canouan resort.{{more}}

This point was made to SEARCHLIGHT on Wednesday by Deputy Commissioner of Police Bertie Pompey.

Pompey was responding to recent media reports that local police had been denied access to the Canouan Resorts Development (CRD) by the resort’s security staff.

“It is part of St. Vincent and the Grenadines. They (the police) have jurisdiction to go anywhere. If an offence is committed anywhere, no one can exclude us,” Pompey said.

On Monday, October 25, Europeans, John Travis and his wife Dr Irina Savelieva, who own property on the resort, on arrival at the CRD compound, were not given access to the compound, because according to CEO of CRD, Achille Pastor-Ris, they wanted to enter in a vehicle which exceeded the size specified for use on the compound.

Pastor-Ris told SEARCHLIGHT that his staff suggested that the Travises use a hotel vehicle, but the couple did not want this.

The couple’s lawyer, Louise Mitchell-Joseph, who was also present, in an interview with SEARCHLIGHT said, “they wouldn’t allow them to enter, and then the police showed up and I said, ‘Well, can’t the police take them in if you would not let them go in with that (vehicle)’. Then they said that they don’t want the police to come in because it will upset the residents to see police going around.”

Head of the police on Canouan, Inspector Cosmus George told SEARCHLIGHT that reports that police were denied access to the resort are “absolutely not true”.

“They called me and wanted me to take them on to the base. Now, that is not my business. I told them that it is a private matter, that is for the lawyer and manager to sort out.

“I then called the chief security (on the resort, David Washington), whom we have an excellent relationship with. I spoke to him and I told him to allow them on the base, take them straight to Pastor-Ris. He provided the vehicle, they went in the resort vehicle to Pastor-Ris,” George said.

Pastor-Ris told SEARCHLIGHT, “Surely, there is a difference between the statement of a preference and a denial of entry.”

George also told SEARCHLIGHT that his officers patrol the resort “day and night”. “There is no where on Canouan that we can’t go. That is absolutely not true,” he said.

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