Pubdate: Sat, 18 Jun 2005
Source: Jamaica Gleaner, The (Jamaica)
Copyright: 2005 The Gleaner Company Limited
Author: A Clean Cop
Bookmark: (Corruption - Outside U.S.)


The Editor, Sir:

Kindly grant me space in your newspaper to say what I know about
corruption in the police force.

I have been a cop for 36 years and I am not a corrupt cop. However,
from experience I know many cops are corrupt in one way or the other.
On a scale of 1 to 10, 10 being the highest, some are at 1, some 3,
some 7 and some 9 on the corruption scale.

However, corruption is nothing new in the Jamaica Constabulary Force.
As far as I know, corruption has been a part of the operation of the
Constabulary at all levels and in many things from promotion to
transfers. Persons due promotion are bypassed for favourites who are
corrupt. Some corrupt persons are now out of the force but that does
not matter because their bank books are fat and their yearly earnings
are in the millions.


I remember in 1980 when I was in charge of a certain station in
Portland. While there I received certain information that one of my
members of staff was about to remove some ganja from a boat. I
informed my seniors and, after seeing no action taken, I called the
Narcotics Section and spoke to the officer in charge and told him
about the date and time of this movement. I waited the whole night for
them to arrive as I could not trust anyone else with the information;
no one came to see me. The following day I heard that the drugs were
removed and that present were policemen and men dressed in soldier

I felt utterly hopeless, helpless and confused. Since that I have not
said anything to anyone because I am afraid. I did not know who was
who; such is the nature of the corruption in the police force.

I do not know how the Commissioner of Police is going to clear the
force because he is not going to get any support from anyone within
the force. However from the Commissioner's revelation it is clear that
he has an idea who they are. He cannot call their names without
evidence because they would take him to court and the Commissioner
would have to pay millions of dollars.


The recruits in the police force are coming from a corrupt environment
and many have calculated their maximum salary for the police for the
next 20 years at the present and future assumed levels and cannot see
any light and service of others is not their choice.

I attended the University of the West Indies at a late stage. Some of
my colleagues ridiculed me as a fool and said they are not looking
education; it is money that they are seeking and that 'education
cannot go to the supermarket'.

The job of the Commissioner is to weed out corruption but that is
widespread and the deal may never be achieved. In the meantime, the
general public suffers because they do not know which cop is corrupt
or which is clean. In their minds they are wondering, "Is this a
corrupt cop?".

I suggest that the commissioner publish the names of all the clean
cops. In doing so the general public will feel a bit more easy.

I am, etc.,

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MAP posted-by: Larry Seguin