Sittlington back as SOCU advisor
Irish consultant and fraud expert, Dr Sam Sittlington is back in Guyana to continue his work as an advisor and mentor to the Special Organised Crime Unit (SOCU) which is mandated to investigate financial crimes.
A press advisory from the British High Commission in Guyana on Friday, January 5, 2018, revealed that Dr Sittlington is back and he will be formally introduced to the public by the United Kingdom (UK) Envoy, Gregory Quinn at a special event on January 9, 2018.
Dr Sittlington’s contract was funded by the British High Commission. The advisor returned to the UK sometime last year after working with SOCU for some 14 weeks.
Public Security Minister, Khemraj Ramjattan was particularly impressed with the work Dr Sittlington had done during his period here in 2017 and had expressed a desire to have him return.
On the other hand, the Parliamentary Opposition was extremely skeptical of the work the consultant was doing at SOCU and had argued that the advisor exceeded his official remit and trespassed into operational matters.
It was while Dr Sittlington was adviser at SOCU that several top former government officials including former president Bharrat Jagdeo were arrested in connection with the high-profile probe in the ‘Pradoville 2’ matter where it is alleged that prime properties were sold exceedingly below market value to preferred persons.
The British High Commissioner had told media operatives at a press conference in August 2017 that the High Commission was in the process of contracting another expert to work with the white collar crime fighting institution for a long-term period.
At the time, he could not say if Dr Sittlington would be rehired or another expert would have come onboard.
Dr Sittlington is a former police investigator from Northern Ireland and an expert on fraud, money laundering and other economic crime issues.