Sat | Dec 3, 2016

JCF Armoury breached

Published:Sunday | February 7, 2010 | 12:00 AM

Cracks in the existing security system at the Jamaica Constabulary Force's (JCF) Armoury were exposed on Thursday, following a major gun-ammo seizure.

A concrete structure, the armoury, which was built more than two decades ago, is regarded as one of the most secure facilities of the JCF.

"The security procedures at the armoury and stores are adequate for the guidance of honest and responsible people. What is appearing is that there was a breach of trust and there was a severe lapse in terms of attention to duty," acting Police Commissioner Owen Ellington told journalists last Friday.

Ellington said an audit of the armoury was conducted last year and a second would be done as soon as the forensic examination of the facility was completed.

He warned that serious action would be taken against anyone found to be involved in the theft of weapons and ammunition from the armoury.

'serious departmental action'

"Our investigations are being conducted with a view to taking criminal action where it is appropriate, and serious departmental action where that is appropriate," said Ellington.

According to the police, the armoury, which is located at the Elletson Road police complex in eastern Kingston, is the place where guns and ammunition purchased for the force are kept before they are distributed.

Illegal guns and ammunition seized by the police are temporarily kept there before they are destroyed. Defective guns which belong to the JCF are sent there to be repaired. The Sunday Gleaner also understands that guns belonging to some licensed firearm holders - especially those who are living abroad - are also kept there.

Several licensed firearm holders who are the owners of more than one firearm expressed concern about their weapons, which they claimed were being kept at the armoury.

Ellington ordered the armoury closed in the immediate aftermath of the discovery of the 19 guns and almost 11,000 rounds of ammunition last Thursday.