Police Commissioner Gary Griffith likened himself to Superman on Wednesday, as he stated that his “kryptonite”, or main weakness, is getting concrete evidence to convict people who are known criminals.
“If you can’t explain your wealth it gives me something now that will take away my kryptonite because people know how to beat the system,” Griffith said at the launch of an Anti-Gang Training seminar hosted by the US Embassy, titled ‘Best Practices in Investigating Gang-Related Activity” at the Police Academy in St James.
“Everyone claims they know who the criminals are, they know who the gang leaders are, they know who the gang members are, they know where the drugs are coming from, but it’s easy to say, it’s easy to have information, it may be easy to have intelligence,” Griffith said.
“That difference from intelligence to evidence for conviction that is where the problem lies, and it hurts me, it really hurts me in the two months that I am here where we know for a fact we have everything to pinpoint who is a gang member, who would have pressed that trigger,” he said.
“Getting information and hearing persons stating that they are seeing the body twitching and you can’t arrest the person because of that difference of intelligence and evidence and this seminar will help us tremendously in making sure we can shift from that intelligence to turn to evidence,” Griffith said.
US Ambassador to Trinidad and Tobago Joseph Mondello expressed his interest in continuing to partner with local law enforcement to bring gang members to justice and ensure safety and security for all citizens.
Griffith was lauded by Attorney General Faris Al-Rawi and Justice Gillian Lucky for his work so far as commissioner.
“In the fight against crime there must be a coordinated and competent approach by all the entities involved in law enforcement,” Lucky said.
“The Trinidad and Tobago Police Service is undoubtedly the flagship in this fight and the public must be able to repose the utmost trust and confidence in the organisation that is mandated to protect and serve all law-abiding citizens.”
“This trust and confidence, however, must be earned and I am therefore pleased that over the past few weeks the nation has witnessed a renewed strength, vitality and focus in the operations of the Trinidad and Tobago Police Service,” she said.
“Commendation must be given to the new commissioner of police Mr Gary Griffith who in record time has been able to marshal his forces and to send the powerful message that those who break the law will be unearthed and be made to face the due process of the law,” Lucky said.
Al-Rawi congratulated Griffith for the announced merger of the Financial Intelligence Bureau, the Anti-Corruption Investigations Bureau, the Fraud Squad and the Cyber Crime Unit, saying that the move will strengthen the TTPS’s ability to target gangs through their financial resources.