Governor in call for drugs case answers

The Governor’s office is pressing the Police to probe why a top level investigation into money laundering and drug running was dropped.

The Royal Gazette understands that the Governor who has reserve powers for the Island’s security has forwarded the claims from a former officer who is upset that the 1990’s investigation was dropped without explanation.

And it is also understood that the Governor’s office wants the Police to supply in return the two interim reports on the collapsed case made in late 1994.  The Royal Gazette has been told that he Police have not yet responded to the request Police Commissioner Jonathan Smith is off the island.

The move comes after the former Police officer, who wishes to remain anonymous, became upset that the Serious Crimes Commission, set up to look into the criminal justice system in Bermuda, had ignored his submission that it should look into the case.

And he said the case was the largest and most serious one involving conspiracy, drug trafficking and money laundering ever conducted by the Bermuda Police Service.

The investigation into drug trafficking involved a local lawyer, several local and international companies and organisations and death row inmates.

Local authorities worked with the United States Drug Enforcement Agency and Interpol on the case which was then dropped.

And the whistle blower claimed one of the reasons the investigation was dropped was because it was getting too close to highly placed people in Bermuda and the British Virgin Islands while Bermuda had been keen not to attract the attention of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development which was putting together a list of harmful tax havens and the Financial Action Task Force which was compiling a list of places not co-operative to fighting money laundering.

Last night the Police refused to comment about the latest development.  A police spokesman said: “At this time I will reserve any comment.”

The former police officer welcomed news that the case was going to be looked at again.

He said “I think this is a reasonable stand for them to take to begin to address it considering both the Police Commissioner and the Deputy Governor are off the Island.”

Earlier this month the whistle blower had attacked the Serious Crimes Commission for not looking into the case and not even acknowledging they had received his submission.

Yesterday lawyer Richard Hector who acted as the Commission’s lawyer said that Commission Chairman, Justice Stanley Moore had been given the submission.

Mr Hector said “It may be that he should have acknowledged that he had received it.  I remember him saying that he would pass it on to the Governor.  I heard nothing more.”

“You may agree that the contents of that letter warranted some close attention.”

But Mr Hector said that because the Serious Crimes Commission was essentially about crimes of violence he could understand why they had passed it on to the Governor.

And Mr Hector confirmed the ex-Police officer’s contention that the one-page submission to the Commission had been faxed to the Governor’s office again in July this year after Mr Gurney and Mr Hector had spoken about the matter when the whistle blower became upset about the lack of response.

Yet earlier this month Deputy Governor Tim Gurney said the case did not ring any bells.

Mr Gurney was on vacation and could not be reached for comment.




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