Judicial system “insensitive” in granting bail- Ramnarine
Bail should be a deterrent to crime however the judicial system is insensitive in the dispensation of bail towards defendants who are charged with committing serious crimes. This is the view expressed by Acting Police Commissioner David Ramnarine at a recent press briefing.
“The amount of bail granted in the court makes a mockery of how responsible people in authority should behave in these matters,” the Commissioner said.
Highlighting one recent incident, Commissioner Ramnarine said the prime suspect in the recent robbery/murder of a Brazilian national in ‘F’ Division was granted bail by the Court twice; for the unlawful possession of a firearm and larceny.
“How can we be so insensitive in our dispensation of the granting of bail?” the Commissioner questioned.
Noting that he can only defend the actions of the police force, Ramnarine said he will not allow the Guyana Police Force (GPF) to be criticised for the failures of the other components in the criminal justice system.
The Commissioner also lashed out at critics over their “insinuations about fabrications and concoction” of the recent crime statistics which show that there is a decrease in serious crimes.
Commissioner Ramnarine said that these statements “only serve to embolden criminal elements”. “They are in the main not really concerned with safety and security of those they claim to represent or speak for…they serve to glorify and support the actions of criminal elements because of the contextual nature in which a few serious crimes, in particularly those involving the use of firearms are glamourized and emphasised,” Ramnarine said.
Serious crimes, involving the use of firearms remain a challenge for the GPF. However, Commissioner Ramnarine said that the GPF is working assiduously to make progress in recent cases. “Within the last few days, of the five robbery murders that we’ve had, we basically are going to be able to make the kind of progress that people in this country can be satisfied with,” Ramnarine assured.
There has been a reduction of reported robberies involving the use of firearms when compared over the last three years, the Acting Commissioner pointed out.
According to police statistics, there have been 80 reports of robberies in ‘A’ Division in 2014, 92 in 2015 and 74 reports in 2016 so far.
In ‘C’ Division, there have been 18 reports of robberies in 2014, 18 in 2015 and 16 so far for 2016.
In ‘D’ Division, there were 6 reports of robberies in 2014, 8 in 2015 and 22 in 2016.
While the increase in this type of serious crimes in ‘D’ Division remains a concern, Commissioner Ramnarine said the Divisional Commander was tasked with working towards reducing the crime rate in that division.