Minister ‘surprised’ at  crime complaint video

Minister ‘surprised’ at crime complaint video

Saint Lucia’s National Security Minister, Hermangild Francis, Monday expressed surprise at a recent video featuring United Kingdom nationals expressing concern about the pace of justice here and raising questions about the professionalism  and competence of the local police.

The video, which has been making the rounds on social media, featured Margaret Pratt, Anne Pearson and Georgina Mortimer in a round-table discussion.

Margaret Pratt’s husband, Roger Pratt, was murdered in an attack aboard their yacht in Vieux Fort in January, 2014, while Anne Pearson recounted details of her mother’s murder some 6 years ago and Georgina Mortimer reported that she was raped while on vacation in Saint Lucia in February last year.

Hermangild Francis said he respects the right of the three UK nationals to voice their frustration with the pace of the matters being dealt with in any forum of their choice.

But he noted that the incidents that were highlighted occurred some time ago under the watch of the previous administration.

“I take no pleasure in stating that fact and I will not dwell on it. What is important at this present time is to indicate how this administration has performed in dealing with the issue  of access to (justice)  and what it has initiated to make our justice system more responsive,” Francis asserted, while detailing a number of initiatives undertaken by the current government.

He said the ‘strides’ were made long before the video featuring the three British women surfaced.

He told reporters that his ministry has always had an open door policy where anyone who has an issue with crime or the dispensation of justice is free to visit and engage him.

“In the case of the overseas territories like the United States and the United Kingdom in particular, their representatives are in constant dialogue with me enquiring about the welfare of their citizens when they have become victims of crime or have difficulty accessing the judicial system,” the former Deputy Police Commissioner disclosed.

“It is against this background that I was surprised to view that video,” Francis stated.

However he declared that the three individuals featured have a constitutional right to make their concerns about the pace of justice in Saint Lucia known.

Francis said that he is aware that the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) has been in constant contact with at least two of the complainants.

He disclosed that two of the matters are not ‘simple’ and ‘straightforward’.

“These matters have several twists and turns and we are presently looking for a resolution,” the minister noted.

But he said he could not go into details.

Nevertheless Francis said he wanted to assure members of the public and the outside world that Saint Lucia intends to deal with the cases as speedily as possible.

 

 

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22 Comments

  1. Anonymous
    September 4, 2017 at 4:42 pm Reply

    Talk,talk,talk and no results

  2. Anonymous
    September 4, 2017 at 4:51 pm Reply

    This problem of access to the justice system and these periods of lengthy delays ( most times years) before a murder or rape case is brought before the court for trial, has become the norm throughout the Caribbean. The slow pace of justice has done irreparable harm to many who already have been severely victimized. Much improvement is needed if the people are to regain confidence in this critically important institution.

    Vibz

  3. Hawk Eye
    September 4, 2017 at 6:12 pm Reply

    Mr Francis, whether the incidents took place under the previous administration which is TRUE is not a cover for the mishandling of those SERIOUS cases. ST. LUCIA now depends upon TOURISM. You fully know what impact this video could have on the tourist industry. Therefore it is incumbent upon you as minister to deal seriously about such cases. DO NOT PASS THE BLAME ON OTHERS. Show the difference between the last administration and this present one by doing what they failed to do. IN this way you will heap on burning coals upon those who wish this administration to FAIL. Do your work MR. MINISTER or get out. Your brother is the example to follow.

    1. Truth Seeker
      September 5, 2017 at 8:15 am Reply

      My first observation was the blame game. Fact is it happened and whether visitors or locals, must be dealt with speedily

      1. Amazed
        September 5, 2017 at 3:08 pm Reply

        Exactly….there’s no if, why, when’s or buts! Justice needs to be served now, not when they may hope everyone just forgets

  4. Curious
    September 4, 2017 at 6:14 pm Reply

    The people spoke about their situations in St. Lucia. they made no reference to UWP or politics. So why bring in politics. What they spoke on is well documented and many St. Lucians and their families suffer similar or worse fates.

    It is long overdue that the police, investigators and the court system be fixed. That is not the people’s business to fix it but it is their absolute right to complain. That is what we pay taxes for and when visitors come to our shores, largely through our marketing and invitation they expect proper services especially in crisis situation whether it be health or safety.

  5. 666 - No Political Affiliation.
    September 4, 2017 at 6:24 pm Reply

    That’s why we shouldn’t depend on tourism alone…one little gust of wind can break that fragile tree.

    1. Anonymous
      September 4, 2017 at 7:41 pm Reply

      Tru dat mi bro

    2. Amazed
      September 4, 2017 at 9:03 pm Reply

      Ain’t that the truth

    3. Anonymous
      September 4, 2017 at 9:21 pm Reply

      666 you are precisely right. Don’t put all your eggs in one basket. The Tourism Industry is so delicate, one bad piece of publicity and it could be ruined for years. Diversify!
      Vibz

  6. EER
    September 4, 2017 at 6:25 pm Reply

    I heard the interviews and its pitiful. These ladies make u think that had it been in their country the crimes would have been solved. Who are they trying to fool.

    1. Anonymous
      September 4, 2017 at 7:32 pm Reply

      Agreed some of them getting me so sick

      1. Amazed
        September 4, 2017 at 9:05 pm Reply

        You should have been sick long ago

    2. Amazed
      September 4, 2017 at 9:08 pm Reply

      They’re not trying to fool anybody. What would be their motivations in doing something as stupid and asnine as you say? They do have a life unlike people like you smh

  7. Anonymous
    September 4, 2017 at 7:33 pm Reply

    We should hire CSI OR the Mentalist

  8. Anonymous
    September 4, 2017 at 7:42 pm Reply

    Yeah right! All you’ll do is talk! talk! talk! And nothing is ever done I can guarantee you in a few months it would be a thing of the past in your minds and brush it aside .

  9. Madam chasnay
    September 4, 2017 at 8:49 pm Reply

    Crime happen everywhere and case delay doh i sympathize with them..tell they tryin a talk show so they using lucia as test

    1. Amazed
      September 4, 2017 at 9:31 pm Reply

      What? Wake up why don’t you? Sure, there’s crimes all over the world….but those countries have justice….especially when it comes to rape and murders

  10. Trump
    September 4, 2017 at 9:41 pm Reply

    bring back the banana industry please

  11. Herman Joeph Vitalis
    September 4, 2017 at 11:15 pm Reply

    Many other unsolved crimes have occurred under this present Government, both individual deaths and mass killings/deaths. Quite a few accidents on the roads have warranted arrests. That never took place. Many one-on-one killings lose their publicity after the news of the deaths. The most notable mass death/killing which occurred under Mr Francis’ watch is that of the notorious Rayneau explosion. Absolutely nothing was done by him or his Government to bring the owner of Rayneau to justice whereas they know only too well that many charges could well be validly preferred against that individual. If bigger international bodies do not intervene here too soon, the lives of individuals will be a lot less than that of a dead flea.n

  12. Bad and Boujee
    September 5, 2017 at 3:27 pm Reply

    Passing the buck as usual. Everything is bloody politics for y’all .

  13. Bad and Boujee
    September 5, 2017 at 3:28 pm Reply

    Passing the buck as usual. Everything is bloody politics for y’all .

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