Reports reaching ANN are that a fallout has occurred within the Royal SVG Police Force that has resulted in at least two Assistant Superintendents of Police being reassigned.
Sources claim that the fallout is linked to what has been called the “unauthorized raid” of a cannabis crop belonging to Cecil Hamilton Edwards of Fitz Hughes. Edwards is currently seeking compensation for damages although legally he does not have a case, we’ve been advised.
The Far Piece (in Richmond) farm, Police Commissioner Colin John has since said, was spotted by the patrolling officers who then entered and carried out their legal obligations. This happened even though Commissioner John and all senior officers would have discussed, approved and adopted the Government’s tolerant policy towards traditional cannabis cultivators in the lead up to a pending Amnesty.
This Amnesty is provided for in amendments made to existing laws to allow for the framework to establish a ‘medicinal’ cannabis industry.
As to how such blatant disregard for acknowledged internal policy could have occurred: “apparently there was some lack of communication at some point,” John told ANN in a previous interview.
Commissioner John, responding on Friday to ANN queries, said the promised investigation into the “unauthorized raid” is still ongoing and that the reassignments are in fact not connected.
He further explained that he is within his right as the Chief of Police to deploy the human resources as the organisation may have need.
Drug Squad commander ASP Scott has taken up duties as the new Major Crimes Unit boss while ASP Ballantyne, formerly of the MCU now replaces ASP Scott – we have been reliably informed.
Amidst allegations of political influence in the officers decision to raid Edwards’ farm, Prime Minister Gonsalves has since said at a Unity Labour Party function, “one or two policemen and women here and there who want, in an election year, to play politics with how they are addressing the liberalisation of marijuana which the government has established as a policy.
I want to advise them, I am keeping an eagle eye on what is happening and when I am ready, in the appropriate circumstances, to act. Ah warning – or a piece of advice to the wise should be sufficient….” one media source reported.