Guns seized, several detained in first hours of SOE in Corporate Area

Guns seized in TT

Jamaica law enforcement officials say they have seized three guns and detained several people since a state of emergency (SOE) was imposed in sections of the Corporate Area on Sunday.

A statement issued by the police on Sunday night noted that the security forces had seized the guns during an operation in which several premises were searched.

National Security Minister Dr. Horace Chang, speaking on local radio, said he expects more guns to be seized during the said the SOE that Prime Minister Andrew Holness announced during a press conference at Jamaica House on Sunday as part of the enhanced security measures covering several communities such as Denham Town and Trench Town that have become crime hotspots across the island .

The latest announcement is a continuation of the government’s use of emergency powers in the fight against crime.

Chang said there should be minimal disruption to activities in the areas covered by the state of emergency.

“We expect normalcy to be carried out in the areas, although it is heavily commercialized and there is heavy traffic. But we have the skill set to ensure that things continue smoothly,” he said.

The security forces have instituted checkpoints at several areas within the three communities and the police are reminding persons residing or visiting the areas that under the SOE they should always have a valid form of identification when leaving home.

The police statement said that the curtailment of activities will be done in accordance with, and with respect to human rights, and persons are encouraged to co-operate with the security forces.

Additionally, the police are cautioning the public to be in full adherence of the restrictions implemented.

Prime Minister Holness, who is also Defense minister, said the new measures became necessary because the capacity of the force was limited   to deal with the high levels of criminal activity.

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