Friday 30 October, 2020

Asst. Police Commissioner: Work to Be Done On Human Trafficking

Her cry for the minimization of fundamental matters that put persons at risk for trafficking comes on the heels of Inspector Troy Lamontagne identification of St. Lucia as a transit and destination country for trafficking in human beings as well as a transit country for human smuggling.

These astonishing revelations were made at a week-long workshop by INTERPOL, the international criminal police organization, at the Bay Gardens Beach Resort on combating human trafficking, which is scheduled to end on Friday.

Lamontagne is the face of the local INTERPOL office called the National Central Bureau.

St. Lucia, he said, had enacted legislation criminalizing human trafficking and smuggling even going as far as institutionalizing measures to implement the legislation yet still Cuban migrants travel to St. Lucia to be smuggled on go-fast boats, yachts and catamarans to the USA via St. Maarten and the British Virgin Islands.

“A new discovery involves Dominicans disembarking cruises for smuggling to the United States, “he said.

Sealy states that a study done by the International Organization for Migration showed St. Lucia along with Barbados, Jamaica, Bahamas, Dominican Republic, Guyana and Surinam have links to trafficking in children, fueled by poverty, gender-based violence and aspirations and hope for a better life.

A recent case involving Asian young people entering St. Lucia to study hospitality at Lambirds Academy had been label a human trafficking matter. The academy’s incorporator and three other men were arrested in 2015 and charged with human trafficking, money laundering and other charges.

The Asians, over 60 of them mainly from Nepal, said they were tricked into paying thousands of United States dollars to come to St. Lucia to attend the academy but never attended classes.

The matter was just recently partially resolved in the High Court this year. The monies taken from the Asians were reimbursed.

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