Head of Major Crimes Unit detained and questioned by US Law Enforcement for several hours; Local Police seeking answers

Head of Major Crimes Unit detained and questioned by US Law Enforcement for several hours; Local Police seeking answers

The Guyana Police Force is seeking to gather information on the detention and questioning of the Head of the Major Crimes Unit of the Guyana Police Force, Superintendent Mitchell Caesar, by US Law Enforcement agents recently.

There are reports that Caesar, who was part of a Guyana Police Force contingent that participated in a training programme in India, was detained and questioned by US Authorities during his stopover in the US on his way to India, and again on his return to the US from India.

While the Guyana Police Force has offered no information on the issue, Vice President Bharrat Jagdeo today said the matter is currently engaging the attention of the leadership of the Guyana Police Force.

Mr Jagdeo said he has been informed that the senior officer has since submitted a report to his superiors in the Guyana Police Force.

“From what I gathered, a report was made to the senior officer or the superior officer of that policeman, so that will engage the leadership of the police force, and that’s where the matter will be dealt with,” the Vice President said in response to a question posed at his weekly press conference today. 

The Vice President said he is unclear as to what could have led to the detention of the Senior Police Officer by US Law Enforcement. He said the US is not likely to divulge information on the arrest or the line of questions posed to the police officer. 

“The United States of America will not tell us what their questions are, why they question people cause that’s an immigration matter; they don’t as a matter of policy, they don’t release why visas are withdrawn or denied, so a lot of people would have had visas withdrawn or denied but they will not share that information, they keep that information to themselves,” the Vice President reasoned. 

However, he assured that should the Government be provided with verifiable information by the US that a Government Official or Police Officer is involved in criminal activities, such allegation would be investigated. 

“If there is any criminality on the part of anyone in government, then once the information is shared with us formally by the US government there will be action taken against people. But we can’t go on the basis of allegations, and all of that…But let me assure you that if there is any information that is shared about criminality on the part of anyone including police officers that they will face the full consequences of the law, we made it clear,” Jagdeo said. 

Last April, the then Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Home Affairs, Mae Touissant Jr Thomas was arrested and interrogated for hours at a US airport while she was heading to China. Her US visa was later revoked while she was in China, forcing her to find another route back home to Guyana.

She has since been transferred from the Home Affairs Ministry and is now the Permanent Secretary of the Labour Ministry.

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