Trinidad’s Police Commissioner Gary Griffith is of the opinion that the criminal justice system and politicians, who continue to give criminal gangs state contracts are big factors in the country’s catapulting murder rate.
Griffiths made his opinion known in an interview with the Guardian Media on the weekend. January ended with a count of 45 people murdered.
The commissioner lamented that it is impossible to win the war on crime when the criminals have the scales of justice tilted towards them. According to Griffith the police continue to do their job by apprehending the “enemies of the state”, and then being told they must get bail.
Our reports are that there are more than 800 shooters. Shooters are those gang members who contribute to the vast majority of the homicides in this country. We have been able to successfully apprehend half of the persons who have been instrumental in committing the majority of homicides. It means if our criminal justice system was effective, half of the homicides could have been cut, just like that,” Griffith was quoted as saying.
Griffith blames what he calls “social decay” in Trinidad for the growing spate of murders and for him, it did not happen overnight. He blames it 15 years of accepting wrongdoing to the point where politicians are now referring to criminals as community leaders. “Politicians facilitating and socialising and accommodating criminal elements,” he reportedly said.