Tue | Oct 3, 2023

Families, businesses guilty of supporting lotto scamming – Wayne Joseph

Published:Monday | September 12, 2022 | 12:05 AM

Senior Superintendent Wayne Joseph, commander for the Westmoreland Police Division, says family members and businesses who are beneficiaries of the proceeds of lottery scamming are guilty of supporting the rampant criminality plaguing the western parish.

“Even decent law-abiding citizens, we find that they themselves sometimes have sons, nephews, cousins, and so on who are involved in lottery scamming; and they are now buying into that notion that they are not doing anything wrong, they are just taking back the money that the white people stole from us in slavery,” said Joseph.

He said they are ignoring the fact that these scammers are usually involved in serious crimes.

“The thing is, with those spoils from the lottery scamming, they are buying [illegal] guns and they are killing people. But because some persons are finding that their house is being added on, and they have a nice vehicle, they play a blind eye to it,” Joseph said.

The senior superintendent was speaking during last Thursday’s stakeholders’ meeting in Westmoreland.


“There are also situations where other persons are benefiting indirectly. They might not be making money directly from lottery scamming, but when it is booming, the security companies make more money because people are in fear,” said Joseph.

As to the businesses benefiting from the trickle-down effect of lottery scamming, Joseph says that even the morgues are benefiting.

“You find that hardware stores, and so on, they sell more steel, more sand, more cement, because they [scammers] are spending money and houses are being built up. Morgues make more money; the used car places, they make more money; so people are benefiting indirectly from the lottery scamming,” said Joseph.

Based on intelligence gathered by the police over several years, the police have developed irrefutable proof that lottery scamming is fuelling the high murder rate in several western parishes as the scammers are using the proceeds from their illicit activities to buy guns and finance gangs.

Since the beginning of the year, Westmoreland recorded 104 murders, which is an increase of 29 murders recorded in the same period in 2021.

Albert Ferguson