PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad and Tobago, September 12, 2018 (CMC) – The Police Complaints Authority (PCA), today, condemned the actions of a few “rogue” Trinidad and Tobago Police Service (TTPS) officers, after a fourth person surrendered to police investigating the kidnapping of the 47-year-old wife of a businessman, last week.
Two police officers are also assisting the law enforcement agencies in their investigations, surrounding the kidnapping for ransom of Natalie Pollonais, last Thursday in south Trinidad.
Police have since rescued the mother of three children, who had been snatched as she left a gym in the south of the island.
“The PCA notes, with grave concern, that, once again, the actions of a few ‘rogue’ officers have tarnished the reputation of the TTPS, and have further eroded the public’s trust and confidence in the service.
“There can be no doubt that discipline must be at the forefront of the TTPS’s agenda. The PCA stands firm in its belief that a more proactive approach needs to be taken to instill discipline in the membership of the TTPS,” the PCA said in a statement.
It added, it wanted to take the opportunity to “assure the public, and to remind police officers that we shall continue to hold police officers accountable in circumstances, where they have committed criminal offences, police corruption, serious police misconduct and for matters related thereto”.
Meanwhile, Police Commissioner, Gary Griffith, has mandated that all plain clothes police officers present their police identification cards to the public, in the performance of their duties.
Media reports said that Pollonais, the wife of Jason Pollonais, a director of Inland and Offshore Contractors Ltd., had been stopped by plain clothes police officers, while driving her car, leading to the abduction.
“Identification cards are to be used for the purpose of identifying such persons, as bona fide officers of the Service. The cards shall be shown to members of the public on demand, whether in plainclothes or in uniform,” the TTPS said in a statement, quoting Section Two of the Commissioner of Police Standing Order.
The statement added, “it must be clearly communicated that the police are required, by law, to identify themselves to suspected persons and other individuals, whilst in the execution of their duties, so as to ensure there is no confusion in the minds of persons, regarding the authority with whom they are interacting”.
Griffith said he was also reminding citizens of their right to contact a family member or friend or the police, should they have a concern or be suspicious with the manner in which an officer is conducting himself/herself.
He said that a uniformed police officer in a marked police vehicle, may not necessarily produce his ID Card, on approach or initial interaction, but once demanded, it must be presented.