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Changes in RGPF

Commissioner of Police Edvin Martin

New Prime Minister Dickon Mitchell has started to implement some changes within the Royal Grenada Police Force (RGPF) following the June 23 general election.

Well-placed sources told THE NEW TODAY that Senior Superintendent of Police, Vannie Curwen was sent to work at Police Headquarters on Fort George from the Prosecution Department on Young Street to take charge of crime and to run the operations of the Criminal Investigation Department (CID).

According to a police insider the changes were announced by Police Commissioner Edvin Martin at a meeting of senior police officers on Tuesday, five days after Prime Minister Dickon Mitchell led his National Democratic Congress (NDC) to a 9-6 victory at the polls over the then ruling New National Party (NNP) of outgoing Prime Minister Dr. Keith Mitchell.

Speculation is rife that the changes were influenced by the Security Team of Advisors working alongside the new Grenadian leader that includes a former Commissioner of Police and a few retired senior police officers.

The source said that Head of the Traffic Department, Superintendent Randy Connaught who is on Special assignment on Police Headquarters is now put in charge of the Department of Administration that was held by Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) John Mitchell who is now put in charge of Operations.

In addition, Supt. Glen Paul who was recently assigned to work at Police head office has been sent back to his old position as Officer in Charge of Central Police Station on the Carenage.

THE NEW TODAY understands that the Secretive Special Branch unit that was controlled directly by the ousted Prime Minister, Keith Mitchell has seen massive changes of personnel including a new head who is due to assume duties sometime next week.

The person earmarked to take over Special Branch is said to be on assignment at the moment in Barbados with the Regional Security System (RSS).

There are also reports that Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP) Senneth Joseph is returning to the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) sometime next week as replacement for ASP Sheldon Thomas who will become the new Adjunct Officer within RGPF.

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ASP Joseph was removed as FIU boss within 24-hours of the change of government in 2013 when Dr. Mitchell and his NNP returned to power in a clean sweep against the Congress-led government of Prime Minister Tillman Thomas.

The FIU had spearheaded an investigation into the Russian oil deal in which EC$1.6 million was allegedly missing.

Former Trinidad & Tobago Attorney General, the late Karl Hudson-Phillip who reviewed the files had given the FIU the go-ahead to lay criminal charges on a senior member of the NNP administration but it never happened.

THE NEW TODAY understands that there is every likelihood that the files pertaining to the investigation will be re-visited by ASP Joseph.

The source said that ASP Maureen Stanislaus who was in charge of Adjunct is being transferred to a new posting at Police headquarters.

He could not shed any light on the status of those members of the Police High Command including Deputy Commissioner of Police, Tafawa Pierre who is the husband of former Education Minister in the defeated NNP administration, Emmalin Pierre, as well as the Immigration Department which the two top posts are held by the brother and husband of ex-government ministers.

The other Deputy Commissioner of Police is 59-year old Michael Francois, with close ties to the NNP administration and is due to proceed anytime now on pre-retirement leave from the police force.

Francois is believed to be acting as Commissioner of Police in the absence of Edvin Martin who left the State today (Wednesday) for the United States on personal business.

Martin had confided in close aides that he was planning to resign from RGPF shortly after the election to take up a job in  the United States.

Prime Minister Dickon Mitchell has already stated publicly that the new NDC government will make changes in Government Ministries, Departments and Statutory Bodies.

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