Prime Minister's Press Secretary
Thursday, December 29, 2005 - The Police High Command says the apparent
slow-down in the islandís homicide rate may be a direct result of the success of
their programme for the recovery of illegal weapons.
With less than 48 hours to go, the islandís homicide rate stands at 36 Ė one
less than the 37 recorded last year. Thatís very much unlike most other CARICOM
countries, where this yearís murder rates have long surpassed that of last year.
This is particularly so in Trinidad & Tobago and Jamaica, where published
statistics indicate that the homicide rates up to yesterday stood at 380 persons
killed in Trinidad & Tobago and 1,647 Jamaicans killed since January 2005.
According to well-placed sources here, the Commissioner and the Police top brass
are of the view that the successful recovery of illegal firearms from the
streets has greatly contributed to the slower homicide rate in St. Lucia.
Under the programme, persons are paid up to EC $2,500 for the successful
recovery of an illegal weapon. Their identities are protected and informants are
paid from public funds.
The Police have confirmed that so far, 201 illegal guns have been recovered
under the programme.