SVG police confirm a probe but local authorities have nothing official

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SVG police confirm a probe but local authorities have nothing official Both the prime minister of Antigua and Barbuda, Gaston Browne, and the acting Commissioner of Police, Atlee Rodney, said reports of “a passport racket in St. Vincent” had not been formally reported to the authorities here up to yesterday.
But, Browne went further to say the allegation should be taken “with a grain of salt.”
For the past two days, a typed letter, without a letterhead or name, has been circulating on social media, and that letter alleges that a senior officer from the Royal Police Force of Antigua and Barbuda is “seriously criminally implicated” in what the letter described as a “fraudulent passport scam in St. Vincent and the Grenadines.”
The officer named in the letter has avoided all contact with OBSERVER media – each time when called he made an excuse why he could not speak and said he would return the call.
But last night, the prime minister said, “Nothing formal has been brought to our attention and I do not see how someone could equate a copied bio page of a passport to an actual passport. That’s utter nonsense. All of our passports are accounted for and the system would reject any fabricated passport.”
He added that he does not see “any sense in this unless it was attempt to commit a fraud by individuals who do not understand the passport processing and its safeguards.”
His next comment also cast further doubt on the allegations even as a high-ranking police officer in St. Vincent told OBSERVER media yesterday that an investigation is actually underway in his country after documents “of a certain nature” were seized from a man at the airport there.
Responding to Aa query about the allegation, Browne said, “There is a destructive propaganda war raging between some members of the RPFAB [Royal Police Force of Antigua and Barbuda], designed to undermine each other. So, we have to take all that is being said with a grain of salt.”
The officer named in the letter on social media is originally of St. Vincent and recently, Antigua and Barbuda’s Commissioner of Police, Wendel Robinson, also a native of St. Vincent, was suspended from duty pending the outcome of a probe into allegations he made unwanted sexual advances towards three male subordinates and then allegedly victimised one of them after that officer reportedly rejected his advances.
(More in today’s Daily Observer)

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