Les Green rejects claims by JCF review panel, says report tarnished him and former colleagues
Retired Assistant Commissioner of Police Les Green has dismissed as false and misleading several statements contained in the report of a committee, appointed by the Jamaica Constabulary Force, that reviewed some of the findings of the West Kingston Commission of Enquiry.
"This JCF internal review document has tarnished us all with an injustice that must be immediately addressed," Green said of members of the Criminal Investigation Branch (CIB) which he led.
In an open letter to Police Commissioner George Quallo today, Green insisted that neither he nor members of the CIB, which he led at the time, was tasked with probing the use of force by members of the Jamaica Constabulary Force and/or the Jamaica Defence Force.
He acknowledged that the police operational plan for the 2010 operations to capture drug lord Christopher ‘Dudus’ Coke gave the CIB responsibilities for the arrest, search, evidence gathering, and processing of the Coke as well as the treatment of significant other suspects who may be arrested or detained.
"The duties and responsibilities for these activities were promptly and fully undertaken by CIB personnel and myself, once we were tasked by the relevant command structure and it was safe for these to be conducted," he said, in the letter, which was sent to the Press Association of Jamaica.
SEE FULL LETTER BELOW:
Mr George Quallo
Commissioner of Police
Jamaica Constabulary Force
11th August 2017
This review was brought to my attention and I am very concerned by the false and misleading statements contained within this internal JCF review.
In relation to my role as ACP, CIB and the Operational Plan:
6.2 The Operations Plan established a Silver Commander at the rank of Assistant Commissioner of Police with the responsibility for:
“arrest, search, evidence–gathering, processing of the subject and treatment of significant other suspects arrested/detained”
The duties and responsibilities for these activities were promptly and fully undertaken by CIB personnel and myself, once we were tasked by the relevant command structure and it was safe for these to be conducted.
However, I must stress that at no time have I or the CIB in general, been tasked with conducting investigations concerning the use of force by the JCF and/or the JDF. It was in May 2010 the specific responsibility of the Bureau of Special Investigation (BSI) and they did not form part of the CIB. (NOTE - There have been at least two exceptions that I know of to this rule and on both occasions they were as a direct result of a specific command by the relevant Commissioner of police and these did not relate to this activity in 2010).
I cannot account for the oversight in the Operational Plan for failing to mention the role of the BSI (as prior to Wednesday 26th May, 2010, I was not in any part involved in the planning, implementation or response to this operational activity) although I am aware that the Commissioner of Police, Mr Owen Ellington immediately and properly addressed this issue (where civilians were injured or killed, within the specified area of activity), by confirming that all related investigations would solely rest with the BSI, as per normal operational procedures and that the CIB and myself would provide all possible assistance. This was provided by CIB officers on the ground and within the local divisional command structures that existed at the time and more importantly by the Forensic Crime Scene Investigators who were attached to the Scene of Crime Unit within the Technical Service Division of CIB.
I cannot account for the conduct of the enquiry but I see no reason why they should have asked me to provide evidence relating to: the recovery of dead bodies, identification of bodies, evidence gathering relative to allegations of extra-judicial killings.
As these were and have always been the sole remit of the BSI, with the appropriate support of local CIB and scene of crime personnel.
In relation to the role of the CIB in general and the following misleading and erroneous comments made in the review;
Despite the absence of the CIB participation …
The Committee found that the system was not followed according to the plan, due to the absence of the CIB participation;
… this specific responsibility was a matter for the CIB in accordance with the Operation Plan.
- 7.13 Situational Analysis is critical in dynamic circumstances such as what existed during May 2010. No member of the Mobile Reserve team had the duty to process dead bodies. This specific responsibility was a matter for the CIB in accordance with the Operation Plan.
- It is to be noted, that the carrying out of investigations, would have been the remit of the Criminal Investigations Branch (CIB). Records that were made should have been obtained, acted on and preserved by the CIB.
These comments are totally unfounded and unjustified for the reasons I have highlighted above. In addition, it is incumbent on all JCF personnel to make appropriate reports and records of relevant activity and to retain those in line with standard JCF procedures. Clearly in violent and dynamic events these will be made as soon as possible after the event and retained in accordance with the JCF procedures.
Specially relating to 7.13 above, the only authorised personnel who can ‘process dead bodies’ within the JCF are the Scene of Crime, Forensic Crime Scene Investigators and this was completed by them when it was safe for them to do so. They and the CIB cannot be held accountable for any prior activity conducted during the operational phase of the activity and they are not trained and or equipped for such work.
I respectfully request that the false and misleading statements are promptly addressed in this publicly circulated review document (published on the JCF website page and widely reported in the media) as any delays will continue to cause distress, alarm and harm to the reputations of nearly 1,500 members of the JCF, who were members of the CIB in May 2010.
I was honoured and privileged to have served in the CIB and I can personally vouch for numerous CIB personnel, who during this period, demonstrated beyond the call of duty at the very highest standards of professionalism, discipline and dedication and this JCF internal review document has tarnished us all with an injustice that must be immediately addressed.
Leslie Green OBE
Assistant Commissioner of Police (Retired)
Jamaica Constabulary Force