Under criticism from fishermen in the Berbice area who find themselves constantly being attacked while out at sea, the Guyana Police Force is explaining that it has been stepping up efforts to arrest the troubling situation and has been working along with the police in Suriname.
In a statement issued on Friday, Police Public Relations officer, Ivelaw Whittaker said over the past five years the Police have conducted investigations into thirty (30) reports of piracy in Berbice, that occurred within the territory of Guyana, and which resulted in twenty-three (23) cases being placed before the courts.
He explained that “in many instances fishermen living in and operating from Berbice have been implicated and charged, including a sibling of the Chairman of the No. 66 Fishermen’s Co-op Society. Given the fact that fisher folks from Berbice are involved in these acts of piracy, the Police have some reservations concerning the sharing of information on their operations/strategies.”
The Police Public Relations Officer in the statement reminded that the Police can only prosecute offenders for offences committed within the territory of Guyana. In many cases, Guyanese fishermen would be attacked and robbed by pirates outside of Guyana’s territorial zone.
The Guyana Police Force has a very productive working relationship with our counterparts in Suriname on reports of piracy, in addition to other law enforcement issues.