PM says firm step taken to crush overseas criminal networks that sponsor crimes in Jamaica following talks with US Department of Justice
Prime Minister Andrew Holness says a firm step has been taken to crush criminal networks overseas, including foreign dons and gun traffickers who are soliciting, directing or sponsoring crimes, particularly murders in Jamaica.
His comments follow discussions he and Police Commissioner, Major General Antony Anderson held with senior officials from the United States Department of Justice (DOJ).
The DOJ hosted a high-level meeting of law enforcement and security agencies to discuss the growing threat of transnational criminal gangs, organized criminal violence, and the trafficking of illegal guns into Jamaica.
The meeting reviewed existing programmes and partnerships, identified gaps to be closed, and explored new opportunities to advance collaboration.
In addition, there was a commitment to greater and more effective information-sharing.
The prime minister said he is assured that the United States is taking even greater steps to deal with the problem of the illegal export of firearms, and was pleased to note the passage of the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act, which creates a legal framework to interdict and prosecute persons illegally exporting guns from the US.
The bill was passed in June, this year.
The Prime Minister asked that Jamaican traffickers and guns destined for Jamaica be given priority attention under this new Act.
He told the meeting that Jamaica needs the assistance of the US to address issues related to illegal guns.
A statement from the Office of the Prime Minister said in expressing its commitment to greater crime-fighting collaboration with Jamaica, the US expressed confidence in Jamaica’s efforts and noted the increase in the extradition of criminals from Jamaica who are wanted in the US.
Meantime, as part of this information-sharing thrust, Jamaican law enforcement identified to US law enforcement, a number of Jamaican criminal actors residing in the US.
Prime Minister Holness said Jamaica welcomes the US’ assistance in locating these individuals.
Police Commissioner Major General Antony Anderson noted that closer cooperation will ensure that criminals do not feel they have a safe haven in the US from which to sponsor crime in Jamaica.