Sat | Dec 10, 2016

We're going to lock you up

Published:Wednesday | November 5, 2014 | 12:00 AMAinsley Walters

CAYMANAS TRACK LIMITED's (CTL) security contractor Jason McKay yesterday said trespassers on Caymanas Park's electricity grid will face arrest and criminal prosecution if found responsible for illegal connections which have been costing the Portmore, St Catherine, racetrack millions of dollars per month.

McKay said confirmation has been received that outside of routine disconnections, hundreds of persons stealing electricity from Caymanas Park can be prosecuted by the police.

"We are going to arrest them next time," McKay warned, pointing out that similar to persons illegally connected to Jamaica Public Service Company's (JPS) grid, the police can arrest trespassers on a privately owned system.

Winsome Callum, corporate communications manager, JPS, confirmed that any affected private entity, working in tandem with the police and technical personnel, can identify electricity theft, in which instance the police can choose to prosecute.

"In a lot of cases, persons

are stealing from individual companies. It is quite obvious that an illegal connection has been made. The technician or operational personnel would identify this to the police and, just like any pilferage in any system, the police can choose to act," she added.

McKay said this was welcome news for him and his team, which have been playing a cat-and-mouse game with electricity thieves at Caymanas Park for years.

COULD CUT BILL

"Finally, we have some teeth to move against these persons as CTL believes it can reduce its light bill by $3 million if these persons are permanently removed. I also incur expenses because each time we go out there, I have to hire electricians," he pointed out.

Senior Superintendent of Police Terrence Sanko of the St Catherine South Police, said he, too, has been brought up to speed on the possibility of arresting persons abstracting electricity from private premises.

"We got some clarification. We were wondering about how to act in the instance of a private enterprise. We normally do it for JPS, but now we can prosecute the same way," he said.

"The next time we go down there, we will do some prosecution. From the reports I have, it is very serious. A number of persons are connected to that system. The amount of wire the guys carried in, it is serious," he added.