Commissioner of Police, Seelall Persaud today told media operatives that there is no proof to support the claim of persons using legal firearms to commit crimes.
Recently, President David Granger said the government is looking to reduce the issuance of firearm licenses since there are cases where “legitimate firearms license holders…rent their weapons out to criminals who would go and rob somebody and maybe give them a part of the loot”.
However, Persaud at a Press Conference earlier today said “I don’t recall that evidence has been collected to prove that, in any of the cases…I know that there are a few ongoing investigations where the line of inquiry suggests that. There is a current murder investigation where that is one of the lines of inquiry by the detectives.”
Crime Chief, Wendell Blanhum disclosed that there was one case thus far for 2016 where a legal weapon was used in a murder but it was later confirmed that the weapon was stolen. “It was not a case where the firearm holder would have rented the gun to the accused,Further” BlanhumFurther,
the Commissioner explained that the Force does not go through its data to determine whether a weapon is legal or illegal unless it receives information which suggests that this may be so. He attributed this, to the lack of requisite technology.
“The specimens that we keep are in the thousands and to make that analysis, it’s a manual comparison that you have to do. So, we may in the future, acquire technology that we can put those information in that we collect from the scene; like we do with the fingerprints and automatically it makes that match. Because it’s a manual procedure, we only go with the information that surfaced” Persaud said.
Also, present at today’s press conference was President of the Guyana Association of Private Security Organisation, Christopher Thompson who expressed concerns with claims of private security firms also misusing their weapons; something he says is not true. The Commissioner, however, disclosed that there is more than one case where security firms issue firearms to untrained personnel.
The Guyana Police Force recorded a slight decrease in the number of robbery under arms for 2016 thus far.