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More UK police officers brought in!- CoP Matthews confirms

- imported officers reportedly working on both cold & recent murder cases
Commissioner of Police Michael Matthews has confirmed Virgin Islands News Online’s first and accurate story that the Royal Virgin Islands Police Force (RVIPF) has brought in a number of additional officers from the United Kingdom to fight crime in the Territory. Photo: VINO/File
Governor John S. Duncan OBE, left, on March 16, 2017 used his powers to impose direct rule and demand from the National Democratic Party Government led by Premier and Minister of Finance Dr The Honourable D. Orlando Smith (AL), right, some $1.88M to be distributed to the Police, Magistrate’s Court, Attorney General’s Chambers and the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions. Photo: VINO/File
Governor John S. Duncan OBE, left, on March 16, 2017 used his powers to impose direct rule and demand from the National Democratic Party Government led by Premier and Minister of Finance Dr The Honourable D. Orlando Smith (AL), right, some $1.88M to be distributed to the Police, Magistrate’s Court, Attorney General’s Chambers and the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions. Photo: VINO/File
ROAD TOWN, Tortola, VI - Commissioner of Police Michael Matthews has said the Royal Virgin Islands Police Force (RVIPF) recently brought in a number of additional officers from the United Kingdom using resources that Governor John S. Duncan OBE used his powers to impose direct rule and demand from the National Democratic Party Government led by Premier and Minister of Finance Dr The Honourable D. Orlando Smith (AL).

Virgin Islands News Online had first and accurately reported since June 6, 2017 that up to six additional UK officers had been brought in to the Territory to assist in the fight against crime, which has been on the upsurge in the Territory.

Mr Matthews was on local television channel 55’s JTV News Big Story with Peta-Gay Coombs and Cathy O. Richards on June 17, 2017 when he made the revelation.

While not giving specifics as to how many UK officers were brought in and the amount of resources being expended on them, the top COP assured that they are here on a short term basis for specific tasks and will leave soon.

Gov’t funding wasn’t sufficient

Mr Matthews stressed that the officers brought in has nothing to do with taking up jobs that could be done by locals.

"The Governor issued a warrant earlier this year as he was concerned about a number of security issues that had arisen and the funding wasn't sufficient to address these issues with the speed they needed addressing and certainly the additional detectives I have just spoken about were as a result of that additional funding through the warrant. It meant that we could bring those additional resources into the territory."

Governor Duncan on March 16, 2017 used his powers in the VI Constitution Order 2007 to impose direct rule and demand that some $1.88M to withdrawn from the Consolidated Fund and be distributed to the Police, Magistrate’s Court, Attorney General’s Chambers and the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions.

Cold case reviews

Meanwhile, Mr Matthews said the UK officers have been in the territory for the past six weeks and have been working with the local officers doing cold case reviews as well as more recent ones.

"And we should be confident that the offenders should be looking over their shoulders because we are very close to providing cases, not just recent cases but previous cases, where I believe we are going to be able to provide sufficient evidence for the DPP to charge."

Since that appearance of JTV News Big Story, two persons- Rebekha  Perssud and Kenaz Hazell- were charged and placed before the court in relation to the murder of Frankie J. Fahie, which occurred in Long Look back in January of this year. 

‘I never give up on victims & families’

Mr Matthews revealed that dating back to 2001 the territory has experienced 56 murders of which 29 offenders were charged. But while describing that as relatively good news, the Police Commissioner said the RVIPF is committed to solving the other cases.

"I never give up on victims and their families."

Porous Territory

One of the challenges to solving crime, according to the Mr Matthews, is that the territory is "porous," which makes it very easy for criminals to enter and leave the territory.

On that same note, the Police Commissioner said he is currently working with the US Justice Department to apprehend a person of interest in a murder which occurred in this territory.

"There is absolutely clear evidence to show that in some of the cases the offenders have committed the dreadful crime and have left the territory."

Change the mind-set

In addition, Mr Matthews said his department is not only concerned about solving murders but also, "This is about addressing a mind-set that is prevalent in the society here, where some people believe it's acceptable to carry a gun, some people believe it's acceptable to beat a woman in the streets, some people feel it’s acceptable to beat their children, leaving extreme injuries."

"There is a prevailing attitude in some minds in the territory that we have to change and the police service can't do that alone. We can't be the panacea to all the problems here."

26 Responses to “More UK police officers brought in!- CoP Matthews confirms”

  • poor we (20/06/2017, 10:17) Like (14) Dislike (16) Reply
    Oh mo! More hoilday packages
  • we need a local governor (20/06/2017, 10:32) Like (20) Dislike (27) Reply
    we did not need no more uk officers, spend the dame money on cameras and put them up everywhere .stop waistin our tax dollars our economy is not robost
    • Really? (20/06/2017, 10:37) Like (13) Dislike (11) Reply
      And who will dissect the information from the cameras? The constables?
    • Online Now (20/06/2017, 11:39) Like (24) Dislike (6) Reply
      There have been a number of photos released from cameras and yet nobody has identified the suspects. How can any police force succeed without a willing population? I don't know if bringing more UK cops in is the answer but if they solve the crimes then it is. I suggest we all help them while they are here rather than close up and complain about what they do in their free time.
      • @ Online Now (20/06/2017, 13:13) Like (17) Dislike (12) Reply
        its a cycle why none of the UK officers coming are black? things that make you go hummmmmm
        • skin (20/06/2017, 16:09) Like (12) Dislike (3) Reply
          How do you know that. Have you done research or you work for the force and was personally introduced to all who came? Stop stirring up confusion and be happy that we're getting some help to solve these murders. Hope and pray that these UK officers make a difference. Quite frankly it doesn't matter what their skin colour is as long as they get the job done.
        • dumb and dumber (20/06/2017, 17:53) Like (3) Dislike (4) Reply
          It's comments like this that make you go dumbbbbbbb!
        • Common Sense (20/06/2017, 19:18) Like (5) Dislike (0) Reply
          The U.K. is a prominently white country as is Europe, if you want black officers you will need to recruit them from Africa or other Caribbean islands however the local seem to object to down islanders being police officers here.You can not have your cake and eat it too.
      • @Online Now (20/06/2017, 15:27) Like (3) Dislike (1) Reply
        Help them by calling the police station and telling them stories? Help them how? They have to as investigators, come out of the Police Station and bond with the community. Ask questions and they will get some answers. Most people are not going to go to the Police Station to report something, but if they are at say the Moorings one afternoon and these police officers who are visible are there at the same time, we know who they are, we may say something. Even if they send the local ones that we know. But they don't even want us to know who they are because all the black people on this island in drugs and doing bad things. So everyone is a suspect. That's why we are nervous speaking with folks who look down their long noses at us. Even the Caribbean ones drive pass us with their noses in the air while enjoying the taxpayers gas and expensive vehicles doing nothing. Shake the bushes. That's your job. More police officers? We will see.
        • Online Now (21/06/2017, 11:11) Like (2) Dislike (1) Reply
          Help them by telling them what you know. If you recognise a face in a press release, tell the police. Shake the bush? Where would they start without information. You ARE the problem!

          As for your casual racism, I don't have time for your nonsense.
  • it's final (20/06/2017, 10:56) Like (16) Dislike (15) Reply
    Our BVI have now become the new haven away from UK Terrorists. Expect more to run from bombs and burning houses.
    • Footandmouth (20/06/2017, 13:58) Like (7) Dislike (8) Reply
      Praise the Lord someone is finally understanding what I have been saying for the longest while...running from the Terrorists in the UK to safe haven in the BVI. This is where our focus should be, than on beating up on each other. Only UK cops can do work? Jesus, help us with these Oppressors.
  • Jacperlance (20/06/2017, 11:13) Like (18) Dislike (13) Reply
    It ain't nobody could come and convince me that this is not a buddy, Buddy affair. Every commissioner comes here from the U.K. Always brings in a set of U.K. Officers with them. This seems like a money making scheme
    • Music (20/06/2017, 13:11) Like (7) Dislike (4) Reply
      Remember he came from Cyprus. No amount of new cameras will solve the cold cases that these detectives have come to study and hopefully solve. I am fed up with thses beach and bar criticisms. Are not all workers allowed leisure time?
  • Street Reporter....Rat Race.. (20/06/2017, 12:06) Like (14) Dislike (0) Reply
    We are to be blame... Our dishonesty, our greed, our selfishness, our hatred for each other...Rat Race..While the cats away, fighting and sleeping....The Cats will sneaking and eat all the Cheese up....Rat Race..
  • Jack B.. (20/06/2017, 12:23) Like (13) Dislike (2) Reply
    These local Cops need to be embarrassed.. Their competence, their honesty and their ability is clearly not up to standard. How else can one look at it?
  • Joe Rudi (20/06/2017, 12:26) Like (7) Dislike (0) Reply
    They need to develop a culture where the corrupt cop and politician fears the incorruptible cop and politician and not the other way around to help solve some of the country's problems. bitch now.
  • M & M (20/06/2017, 14:49) Like (10) Dislike (1) Reply
    some NDP politicians should be happy they are not Scotland yard but just regular police officers LOL
    • @m&m (20/06/2017, 18:21) Like (2) Dislike (2) Reply
      How do you so sure they are not Scotland yard.? I think one or two of them is Scotland yard.... Its a lot of cleaning up to do..
  • hope not (20/06/2017, 15:45) Like (6) Dislike (4) Reply
    Did he use that money to employ his class mates?
  • island man (20/06/2017, 18:52) Like (5) Dislike (2) Reply
    Mr. Matthew, I am in support of your efforts and believe you are interested in the safety of this Territory. I do hope some of this cases are solves and the offenders are brought to justice. Above all, I remember quite well; an Attorney was gun-down in this territory above all odds, this case as like all others must be solved.
    my main reason for this, is the fact; when offenders starts killing upholders of the law, Police Officers should not sleep! because this is an extreme to the safety of society, Officers, Ministers and Law makers.
    Am with you on the appointment of offers from the UK. Lets get going Sir.
  • de silent one (20/06/2017, 19:36) Like (3) Dislike (1) Reply
    Why is the COP situating the Police Force with all of these retired English police officers, they are no major help to the organization. What he should be trying to do, is to use some of that money and do more training to those dedicated officers. But then, he have some deputies who don't seems to have any balls but to go along with the idea of pushing out the local/regional guys that can offer something.
  • musa (21/06/2017, 07:22) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
    this bass say to have a dog at lease and there is no place in the bvi for bad man still we having hard time ....... we need a new bass
  • onlooker (21/06/2017, 16:33) Like (1) Dislike (2) Reply
    well good. there's plenty of whores working the bars on tortola to accomodate them. the kickbacks are paid up!

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