Local law enforcement officials say they are working with Interpol to determine the likelihood of visitors to the island coming here solely for the purpose of committing crime.
This was revealed today by Acting Commissioner Of Police Tyrone Griffith during a hastily called Press conference at the Courtyard by Marriott.
“Obviously it would be of significant importance if we were able, at our borders, to have fingerprint[ing] available so that we would better know who are coming into our shores. But we are aware it is a problem that we have to keep our eyes open for,” Griffith said.
He further stated it was not only Barbados that was being targeted by such crime.
“I believe that if these people perceive that it is an easy opportunity for committing crime they will go to those shores. I think Barbados has been relatively successful in identifying these people early and identifying these types of crime, being successful in solving them,” he told journalists as he updated them on development relating to a case earlier this month in which it was alleged that about $35 million in jewellery and cash were stolen from a residence in the Sandy Lane, St James community.
The matter of non-nationals entering the island and committing crimes first reared its head on public’s radar in October last year, when two Bulgarian nationals were arrested and charged with two counts each of money laundering and going equipped with intent to commit theft, after they were held trying to leave the country at the Grantley Adams International Airport.
On Tuesday, four Colombians, Hames Asdrubal Mendoza Arevalo, a 35-year-old taxi driver; businessman Santiago Prad Vieda, 34; and 26-year-old students Bairon Valencio Lopez and David Mauricio Botero-Montes made their first appearance in court to answer to a number of criminal charges, including entering a number of homes with the intention of stealing.
Meanwhile, Griffith has confirmed that police here have been contacted and are conducting investigations into claims that threats against regional air carrier Caribbean Airlines originated out of Barbados. It had been reported that the threat had come over the weekend at the airline’s Bridgetown office via telephone with the person on the line identifying “the flights out of Guyana to the United States [on Monday] as the terror target”.
The information triggered an emergency advisory from the United States Embassy warning American citizens against travelling on Caribbean Airlines flights to the United States from Guyana during the period Monday, February 10, to Wednesday, February 12.
Barbados TODAY understands that intelligence officials in Guyana, Trinidad and Tobago and here in Barbados, with help from the United States, are continuing their probe of the threat and are focusing on the possible source of the call.