The Guyana Police Force on Monday dismissed claims by the Opposition that there are some 200 persons who have been blacklisted from leaving Guyana by the Special Organised Crime Unit of the Force.
The Police described the allegation as nothing more than “a fabrication” and offered figures to show the number of persons blacklisted in past 10 years.
“The Police Blacklist over the last ten years contained a total of one hundred and thirty-nine (139) persons with eleven (11) from 2008, eleven (11) from 2009, fifteen (15) from 2010, five (5) from 2011, eighteen (18) from 2012, twenty-three (23) from 2013, eleven (11) from 2014, twelve (12) from 2015, sixteen (16) from 2016 and seventeen (17) for 2017. The allegation that 200 persons were blacklisted by the Special Organised Crime Unit (SOCU) is a fabrication”, the Police Force said in its statement.
The statement came weeks after the claim first appeared in the media and following efforts by an Opposition Member of Parliament to get the Police Force to release the names of the persons who have been blacklisted from leaving the country.
The Police Force said it should be noted that the list it has released predates SOCU and the number of names on the list includes those from the entire Guyana Police Force, as well as other law enforcement agencies in Guyana.
In a recent letter to the press, PPP Member of Parliament, Anil Nandlall, said that as Attorney General, he was very firm in his advice to the Police regarding preventing persons from leaving the jurisdiction.
“In fact, I did a legal opinion for the Police Force outlining the circumstances when a person can, lawfully, be prevented from leaving the country,” Nandlall claimed.
He said he was forced to do so because a High Court Judge awarded damages against the State when Immigration Officers at Cheddi Jagan International Airport, prevented an entire family from leaving Guyana for North America because their names were placed on a list.
The Police said records checked at the Office of the Commissioner of Police revealed that while the Force was represented by the Attorney General in matters of litigations brought by persons placed on the Blacklist, no record of any opinion or instruction from the Attorney General to the Police has been found.