Illegal guns pouring into Trinidad
PORT OF SPAIN – Several high-powered rifles are among the cache of 359 guns that have either been smuggled into Trinidad and Tobago along its coastal boarders or were locally built by cold-blooded killers over the last six months.
?Sunday Express investigations uncovered that the guns, along with thousands of rounds of ammunition, were seized during raids and police exercises.
In some instances, the illegal firearms were found after shoot-outs between police and civilians.
The gun, however, that was used to murder Senior Counsel Dana Seetahal on May 4 remains on the streets in the hands of killers.
Seetahal, one of the state prosecutors in the Vindra Naipaul-Coolman trial, was in her Volkswagen sport utility vehicle proceeding north along Hamilton Holder Street, Woodbrook, when a Nissan Wingroad car pulled alongside, and her killer shot the former independent senator several times.
Crime scene detectives found several 5.62 shells at the scene where Seetahal was murdered.
Seetahal’s murder, like many others, remains unsolved as the murder toll for the year up to yesterday climbed to 234.
Several of the illegal guns were used in murders, robberies, burglaries and shooting incidents.
According to the Police Service, there have been 255 woundings and shootings so far this year. Some 1 220 robberies and 1 114 burglaries have also taken place.
Last year a United States District Court identified Trinidad and Tobago as a transhipment point for smuggling guns, drugs and terrorists during the high-profile court matter involving Dino Bouterse, son of Suriname’s President Desi Bouterse.
Long-range patrol vessels, which are expected to boost maritime security measures, have not yet arrived in Trinidad from China. (Trinidad Express)