Ausbert Regis, who served as Police Commissioner from 2003 to 2010, has told the Times that in his experience, criminal deportees are not linked to violent crime here.
Regis explained that it started out in 2004 when there were quite a number of deportees.
However he told the Times in an exclusive interview that the number decreased over the years.
“I cannot recall any major crime we have had where a so-called criminal deportee was involved and masterminded anything,” the former Police Commissioner declared.
He explained that the major crimes occurring locally, the gang related violence, are the result of reprisals – one gang against the other.
Regis described it as “locally grown” violence and crime.
He pointed out that Canada and the United Kingdom deport more Saint Lucians on a yearly basis than the United States.
According to the former top Cop, Canada is the number one “culprit” for deporting persons who are denied refugee and residential status, persons who have overstayed and persons who have committed minor infractions of the law.
He disclosed that the United Kingdom is second to Canada.
Regis told the Times a lot of Saint Lucians are deported from the UK for drug related offences.
“Based on the records that I have, and I think the current records would follow the same trend, the rate of deportations in terms of levels would be Canada, the United Kingdom and the United States and most of the deportations are for non-violent offences,” the former Police Commissioner asserted.
He expressed the view that the criminal deportee issue is more a fear of crime than the deportees actually being involved in promoting serious criminal activity.
But Regis said that the same may not hold true for the larger countries of the Caribbean.
The former Police Chief said in regard to serious crime:
“It is for us to understand that the problem is home grown and the solution has to be home grown.”