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Bureau of Special Investigations not duplicating INDECOM role

Published:Friday | July 31, 2015 | 12:00 AM

The Independent Commission of Investigations (INDECOM) has noted that the Bureau of Special Investigations (BSI) continues to play a significant role in investigations against police personnel.

Commenting on the retention of the BSI, INDECOM Commissioner Terrence Williams argued last Friday that the two entities have coexisted without a duplication of roles.

Speaking during a Gleaner Editors' Forum, Williams said: "The police force must have its own internal affairs arm, which is the Inspectorate of Constabulary, and I think the BSI supports the inspectorate; how many officers they have now I don't know, but I don't think they would have retained the 60 investigators that they would have had."

The INDECOM commissioner said police personnel are arrested by appointment with the assistance of the BSI.

In terms of seizure of weapons from police personnel, Williams also explained that this is done by the BSI, given that INDECOM does not have a facility to store weapons.

He also dispelled the notion that the BSI duplicates the role of INDECOM.

"No, there is not a duplication of roles, because the police must handle their own internal affairs. Now what they want to call it or how it will operate is for the commissioner of police to decide," he added.

Hamish Campbell, assistant commissioner at INDECOM, speaking to the assistance that the body has received from the BSI, also addressed the issue of role duplication.

"The BSI are [sic] extremely supportive and helpful of INDECOM, and there is no sharing of functional duties. They spend a greater part of their time doing a lot of other investigations that we will not see sight of in terms of their internal affairs, but when we seek help for blockages, removal of difficulties, they are there for us and do that," he said.