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24 police officers complete training in Electronic Interviewing of Suspects

24 police officers complete training in Electronic Interviewing of Suspects

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The Royal St. Vincent and the Grenadines Police Force can now better protect their integrity and credibility, with the introduction of Electronic Interviewing of Suspects.{{more}}

Police officers, along with facilitators of the program, held a graduation ceremony for a workshop on the Electronic Interviewing of Suspects of serious offences on Friday, March, 16 2012, at the Old Montrose Police Station.

Daniel Suter, Criminal Justice Advisor to the Eastern Caribbean British High Commission, giving an overview of the workshop, described the introduction of electronic interviewing as ‘Revolutionary.”

Suter stated that St. Vincent and the Grenadines was the first place in the Caribbean that will have this type of investigative support.

He also commended the officers on their excellent performance during the workshop.

“I knew that St. Vincent and the Grenadines would not let me down, and you certainly have not let me down. In fact you have shown yourselves to be the exemplary officers that I know you were,” Suter stated.

Suter explained that the initiative is “revolutionary” as it will protect the integrity and credibility of the police force. He stated that one of the main reasons for delay in criminal justice is the challenges via defence, when the integrity of the Force is attacked.

“The simple fact is the evidence is there,” Suter stated, adding that the camera used in the recording process cannot lie. He added that the electronic interviewing will also protect the human rights of the suspects, so that they are protected.

“So it helps everybody, and this is why it is revolutionary, and this is why it is the right way forward,” Suter added.

Also giving remarks at the event, Ralph Gonsalves, Prime Minister and Minister of National Security, described the electronic interviewing as ‘blissful’. Gonsalves stated that the government has taken a number of initiatives in strengthening the criminal justice system through changes in legislation, reforms in the police force and the judiciary system and improved physical facilities. He, however, added that there is still more work to be done.

Gonsalves added that justice will be made purer through the electronic interviewing of suspects.

He explained that during a voir dire, which is a trial within a trial, the judge will be able to see the truth as to how the police behaved and how the suspects behaved during the interviewing.

Gonsalves further stated that the electronic interviewing protects officers and makes sure that the hard work that they do is not undermined.

“What we are embarking on will help the prosecution, help to protect the innocent suspect, the man who should not be found guilty and therefore everybody should be happy and justice will be made purer,” Gonsalves said.

The two-week workshop began on March 5, 2012, and the closing ceremony saw twenty-four police officers awarded with certificates of participation.(OS)

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