The Police High Command has denounced allegations that the transfer of a senior Inspector from the White Collar Crime Unit to a sun Command Position in Division B and was politically motivated. The Police have also rubbished claims that investigations into money laundering allegations against two government officials were ongoing.
The transfer of Inspector James Sutton, however, has been shrouded in controversy.
“The Royal St. Christopher and Nevis Police Force is an organization with procedures and processes like any other professional organisation. Internal matters are dealt with using protocols which are usually documented in a policy paper. The same is true as it pertains to transfers within the Police Force. These are not only routine, but are executed using the Provisional Transfer Policy Guideline of the Royal St. Christopher and Nevis Police Force. This is why it is with deep dismay that the High Command of the Police Force learned of an article that casts aspersions on the integrity of the transfer process and goes as far as to make erroneous claims to achieve this malicious end. Additionally, the High Command places on record that there is no investigation currently underway into money laundering allegations involving top government officials as stated in the misleading article,” a statement issued by the Police said.
“The public is assured that transfers are undertaken in an impartial manner and are a part of the natural operation of the Force. There were just over thirty (30) postings that were done and, unlike the article states, over fifty (50) Officers were transferred. Once such a large scale set of transfers takes place a special Force Order is published to list them all,” the release added.
The transfer of Inspector James Sutton, a veteran white-collar crime investigator with nearly 30 years in the Force to Division “B” Sub Commander and Supervisor Criminal Investigations Department and the revelation of Jerry Watt, a Corporal with about 12 years in the law enforcement, as the replacement has not gone down well with many and it has sparked social backlash.
“It’s a shame when politicians use the Gazetted Officers in the Police Department as pawns. Inspector James Sutton was doing his job and now he is transferred for doing so. These men are professionals and not puppets. No wonder morale in the Police Force is at its lowest point ever. No one should be above the law,” said former police officer, Thadeus Depusoir.
“This (the transfer) is tantamount to the obstruction of justice and the continued political control of important areas of the police force. This action smacks of political interference; the scent which leads right up to the Office of the Prime Minister based on his track record since taking office,” said a senior police officer who requested anonymity for fear of victimization.
Some critics also questioned the existence of justice in St. Kitts and Nevis when there are strong indications that the Police and Legal systems are seemingly under political control
The recent Special Order lists 34 new postings and 23 transfers in the law enforcement body.