The Royal Saint Lucia Police Force (RSLPF) has issued a warning to people who misuse curfew passes issued by the National Emergency Management Organisation (NEMO) that they face arrest and the seizure and cancellation of the permit.
Police Superintendent Benson Deterville sounded the warning as he appealed to the public to observe the laws of this country.
He disclosed that individuals who appear not to be adhering to the laws including the COVID-19 laws must expect to be approached and challenged by the police.
” Let me state you will be asked to correct the behaviour creating the violation or the offence. You will be asked to provide your name and address and produce a document with which the police officer can verify the same,” Deterville stated.
He explained that police would ask individuals to present their NEMO pass for inspection during curfew hours and explain their reason for breaching the curfew order.
“If it is determined or suspected that you are not commuting to or from work, you will be arrested. A complaint will be lodged against you, and your NEMO-issued pass will be seized on behalf of NEMO. NEMO may subsequently cancel your pass,” the senior officer who is responsible for operations throughout Saint Lucia disclosed.
According to Deterville, if police have ‘reasonable suspicion of criminal activity,’ individuals can expect officers to ask them to step out of the vehicle to be searched.
“Your vehicle will be searched. Your mere movement outside during the no-movement order is sufficient grounds for the police to search you and your vehicle,” the senior police officer explained.
In addition, Deterville said businesses that remain open past the stipulated closing times would have their licences suspended or revoked, and owners and or operators, as well as patrons, will be arrested and prosecuted.
Deterville disclosed that the police would continue to provide a visible presence to prevent and respond to crime and deviant behaviour and enforce the COVID-19 act, its related regulations, orders, and protocols while exercising patience and discretion and observing the rule of law and human rights of all.
On behalf of the RSLPF, Deterville called on members of the public, including police officers and other essential workers, to observe the laws of Saint Lucia.
He also urged them to cooperate with law enforcement officers by obeying all lawful commands and instructions and playing their part in keeping this country safe and secure.
Headline photo: Stock image of RSLPF vehicle check