SOCU’s operations legal – Minister Harmon
Georgetown, GINA, July 14, 2016
Minister of State, Joseph Harmon, when questioned by media operatives at his post-Cabinet briefing today, on the status of the Special Organised Crime Unit’s (SOCU) protocols, said that the unit is operating in a legal manner.
The Minister stated that “the protocols had been reviewed and we looked at the law in relation to the operation of SOCU.”
Minister Harmon reminded members of the media that SOCU is a department of the Guyana Police Force (GPF) which is headed by the Assistant Commissioner of Police.
“It is an arm of the Guyana Police Force and what it is doing is consistent with the laws of Guyana and the Act under which the Guyana Police Force operates,” Minister Harmon stated.
However, the Minister pointed out that when it comes to the protocol of SOCU, it requires pinpointing the particular section of the Act of the Guyana Police Force. “It is a question of looking at a particular section under the police Act that says these are the operations that are to be conducted, but this evaluation was done.”
Media operatives were advised that the Minister of Public Security, Khemraj Ramjattan would be able to elaborate on the issue.
SOCU was established in 2014 under the previous administration, but the unit lacked the essential protocols needed to operate as a specialised unit probing financial crimes.
Minister Ramjattan said that the protocols have been drafted. The Minister explained that the protocol will outline “how they (SOCU) are going to do their operations and those are going to be made public and you will see them. It will ensure that they come in line with what are the Police Standing Operating Procedures.”