Seven hundred kilogrammes of ganja and 150 kilogrammes of cocaine representing drug seizures dating back to 2016 were destroyed Friday by Saint Lucia Police at the Roseau beach.
A Justice of the Peace was present to ensure transparency, the police said.
Acting Assistant Superintendent Gibson Chitole told reporters who were invited to witness the event that permission is sought from the Police Commissioner who authorises the destruction of the drugs.
“We are looking at drugs from stations within the Northern Division, Bordelais Correctional Facility and also the Drug Unit,” Chitole explained.
Asked to address public concerns about the integrity of the process police official explained the procedure.
He said when an exhibit is recovered, it is the duty of the investigating officer to package and seal it to ensure that the exhibit is intact.
“When you go to the court, you have to prove the integrity of the exhibit and that is collecting the exhibit from the accused person, packaging it, sealing it, labelling it and then you have to take it to the exhibit keeper – so the continuity of the exhibit between the exhibit keeper and the court system would verify that this exhibit has remained intact until it is to be destroyed,” the senior police officer stated.
“When that exhibit has been finally dealt with by the courts, the investigating officer would hand it over to the exhibit keeper, sealed in the same way and intact. A record will be made and that is the same record that goes to the (Police) Commissioner. The Commissioner now approves of the destruction and then we now involve the JP. The JP would verify that same list and then we would destroy it.”
Reporters were informed that the JP already has prior knowledge of all the exhibits and is present from the time the drugs are collected and loaded to be destroyed, until the drugs are destroyed.