Jamaica PM Andrew Holness meets officials of US Justice Department

Jamaica: Prime Minister of Jamaica Andrew Holness had meeting the United States Department of Justice’s senior officials, which coordinated and hosted a high-level meeting of law enforcement and security agencies. He was accompanied by the Commissioner of Police Major General Antony Anderson.

The meeting was also attended by Deputy Assistant Attorney General and Counsellor for International Affairs Bruce Swartz, and several executives of the Federal Bureau of Investigation as well as the International Narcotics Bureau and Law Enforcement Affairs, the Organized Crime and Gang Section of the Justice Department, the Computer Crime and Intellectual Property Section, and the International Criminal Investigative Training Assistance Program.

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The meeting witnessed discussion of the growing threat of transnational criminal gangs extensively, organized criminal violence and the trafficking of illegal guns. The leaders also reviewed existing programmes and partnerships and identified gaps which we will close and new opportunities to advance collaboration.

Furthermore, they also committed to greater and more effective information sharing. “Currently, we have identified to US law enforcement a number of Jamaican criminal actors residing in the United States, who are directing, soliciting or financing crime in Jamaica,” Prime Minister Andrew Holness informed post meet.

The closer cooperation will ensure that criminals do not feel they have a safe haven in the United States from which to sponsor crimes in Jamaica.

The government of Jamaica was assured that the United States was taking even greater steps to deal with the problem of the illegal export of firearms and were pleased to note the passage of the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act, which creates a legal framework to interdict and prosecute persons illegally exporting guns from the United States. The bill was passed in June of this year. “We have asked that Jamaican traffickers, and guns destined for Jamaica, be given priority attention under this new law,” PM Holness stated.

“Our United States partners expressed confidence in the efforts of the Jamaican government and noted the increase in the extradition of criminals from Jamaica who are wanted in the US. Opportunities for further expansion of institutional and human resource capacity building and training were also explored,” he added.

As per the Prime Minister, the meeting represented a firm step in crushing criminal networks overseas, including foreign dons and gun traffickers who are soliciting, directing or sponsoring crimes in Jamaica.

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