New plot uncovered to kill police commissioner of Trinidad and Tobago

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By Mark Bassant, February 15, 2019

Commissioner of Police Gary Griffith arrives at yesterday media briefing at the Police Administration Building, Edward and Sackville Streets, Port-of-Spain. * NICOLE DRAYTON photo

(TRINIDAD GUARDIAN) — A new plot has been un­cov­ered to as­sas­si­nate Com­mis­sion­er of Po­lice Gary Grif­fith by two in­car­cer­at­ed gang lead­ers and one of their as­so­ciates.

In­tel­li­gence sources say the con­tract to kill was con­nect­ed to the hu­man traf­fick­ing bust which oc­curred last Wednes­day.

The in­for­ma­tion is com­piled in a con­fi­den­tial re­port pre­pared by the Spe­cial Op­er­a­tions Re­sponse Team on Feb­ru­ary 8.

A copy of the re­port which has been ob­tained by Guardian Me­dia names of the ma­jor play­ers in the plot and their plan to take out the Com­mis­sion­er with help of shoot­ers based in the Laven­tille area.

Commissioner Griffith (without mask) leading his a special task force team. * Photo credit: T&T police

One high-rank­ing in­tel­li­gence source told Guardian Me­dia they are cer­tain the threat is linked to the hu­man traf­fick­ing bust that took place on Feb­ru­ary 6, in which 19 young Span­ish-speak­ing girls were res­cued in West Trinidad and at a Chi­nese restau­rant on Ari­api­ta Av­enue.

Some 18 sus­pects were ar­rest­ed and re­main in cus­tody as po­lice con­tin­ue to piece to­geth­er this in­tri­cate crim­i­nal net­work.

Mere hours af­ter the sex traf­fick­ing bust, a con­fi­den­tial in­for­mant reached out to the mem­bers of SORT spilling the beans about the plot and why the Com­mis­sion­er was be­ing tar­get­ed.

“Seems based on our in­for­ma­tion these per­sons reached out to these gang lead­ers in jail to en­sure that the job to pass out the Com­mis­sion­er was done,” said a high-rank­ing in­tel­li­gence source.

An­oth­er re­li­able source said, “Be­cause we in­ter­rupt­ed their crim­i­nal en­ter­prise and they now want to si­lence the Com­mis­sion­er. We’re talk­ing about pow­er­ful and af­flu­ent peo­ple here,” he said.

The in­for­ma­tion, the re­port stat­ed, was ex­tract­ed from a con­fi­den­tial in­for­mant with in­ti­mate de­tails about the plot and was ti­tled “Spe­cial re­port: plot to as­sas­si­nate the Com­mis­sion­er of Po­lice Grade C,2”.

In­tel­li­gence sources who spoke to Guardian Me­dia on the con­di­tion of strict anonymi­ty con­firmed that the re­port was for­ward­ed to Com­mis­sion­er Grif­fith for his pe­rusal the same day it was pre­pared.

Guardian Me­dia spoke to Grif­fith about the con­fi­den­tial re­port via tele­phone min­utes af­ter he held a me­dia con­fer­ence yes­ter­day to in­form the pub­lic about the on­go­ing po­lice ex­er­cis­es and their crack­down on gang ac­tiv­i­ties and re­put­ed gang mem­bers.

“I am aware there has been yet an­oth­er plan for an as­sas­si­na­tion at­tempt on me and I ex­pect this will con­tin­ue. The more that I de­cide to peg back crim­i­nal el­e­ments the more they will be frus­trat­ed. As I stat­ed be­fore this is a mul­ti-bil­lion dol­lar in­dus­try there are many toes I am step­ping on. Toes may vary from those wear­ing their pants one foot off from their waist­line to those with a Hugo Boss suit. It is ir­rel­e­vant to me. I will do what is re­quired. I have my job to do they have theirs. If they feel theirs is to take me out it is to­tal­ly ir­rel­e­vant to me they could try if they want, it would be an ef­fort in fu­til­i­ty,” de­clared Grif­fith.

This re­port came al­most three months af­ter a Spe­cial Branch re­port in No­vem­ber last year that Guardian Me­dia re­port­ed ex­clu­sive­ly on which re­vealed that the Mus­lim and Ras­ta City gangs were plan­ning to take out Com­mis­sion­er Grif­fith.

Due to the sen­si­tiv­i­ty of the in­for­ma­tion, Guardian Me­dia felt it was in the best in­ter­est to on­ly use the first ini­tial of the in­di­vid­u­als named in the re­port.

The re­port stat­ed that an in­car­cer­at­ed Mus­lim gang leader had or­dered the hit from in­side the Max­i­mum Se­cu­ri­ty Prison and had joined forces with a Mara­bel­la gang leader who is al­so be­hind bars at the Max­i­mum Se­cu­ri­ty Prison to ex­e­cute this hit.

The re­port re­vealed that the re­put­ed Mara­bel­la gang leader had re­cruit­ed an as­so­ciate “J” al­so from Mara­bel­la to re­cruit shoot­ers from Laven­tille for the as­sas­si­na­tion. The as­so­ciate, the re­port states has a sis­ter who re­sides in the Laven­tille area that is sus­pect­ed of fal­si­fy­ing deeds and birth cer­tifi­cates for the pur­pose of se­cur­ing bail for de­tained peo­ple and with her help, he would re­cruit the shoot­ers for the job from that area.

Au­thor­i­ties say they were al­so aware that the in­car­cer­at­ed Mara­bel­la gang leader was us­ing a Dig­i­cel cell­phone in prison to com­mu­ni­cate with his cronies.

The re­port al­so lists com­ments some of the said in­di­vid­u­als who are in­volved in this plot to kill the Com­mis­sion­er Grif­fith.

The SORT re­port stat­ed that the re­put­ed Mara­bel­la gang leader had been in a war for turf with his Mara­bel­la as­so­ciate, J, pri­or to his in­car­cer­a­tion.

How­ev­er, a Port-of-Spain gang leader (full name called) through his mu­tu­al as­so­ci­a­tion with both men was able to mend their re­la­tion­ship last year, the doc­u­ment said.

The SORT re­port made five se­cu­ri­ty sug­ges­tions (which Guardian Me­dia will keep con­fi­den­tial) on how to deal with this plot quick­ly and ef­fec­tive­ly with the hope of bring­ing the per­pe­tra­tors to jus­tice.

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