‘We in danger’

By Nalinee Seelal
Wednesday, February 13 2008
newsday.co.tt

LaventilleCrime weary Laventille residents fear their lives and those of their families are in danger and believe gangs will strike back when a lockdown on their community is lifted.

“They are afraid of no one, and when the police and soldiers end this exercise and return to their bases, the gang members will strike again, so the exercises taking place will only prevent the killings and violence temporarily,” one woman told Newsday yesterday.

She was one of several women who expressed outrage and fear over a joint police and army lockdown which began at Picton Road at about 9 pm on Monday.

There has been an upsurge in murders and shootings at Picton Road where homes have been firebombed.

The women said the criminals the protective services had searched for had left Laventille, among with scores of residents, and are likely to return when the police withdraw, leaving them vulnerable once more to attacks.

Most men remained in hiding yesterday, and the few that ventured out were searched by the police and soldiers.

The women, some of them grandmothers who had their grandchildren with them, spoke out against the manner in which they and their homes had been searched.

The searches were ordered by Police Commissioner Trevor Paul, Chief of Defence Staff Brigadier Edmund Dillon and Director of the Special Anti-Crime Unit Brigadier Peter Joseph.

Senior Supt Errol Dillon led the heavily armed contingent of 150 police officers and soldiers on the searches at Picton Road which were extended yesterday morning to Beverly Hills. Units also spread out to Canada, Plaisance Terrace, John John, Snake Valley, Desperlie Crescent, Rose Hill, St Barb’s, Eastern Quarry, and Pump Trace.

One Beverly Hills woman defiantly declared that she won’t be run out of hercommunity but made a desperate plea for peace to return to Laventille.

“I have no fear. I not in any war with anybody, and I want peace to come back in the area. I want the area to have peace again where everybody free to come and go when they want,” she said.

The angry woman said the police behaved aggressively with residents during the searches and linked the gang warfare to a government apartment complex in Beverly Hills. She said gang members fought over who is going to get accommodation and jobs. The complex has been under construction for the past five years.

“Let the apartment building finish because all the crime here associated with that apartment building and it have too much square pegs in wrong holes,” said the woman. Four years ago, her house was shot at but no one was arrested.

The overnight raids had been prompted by the firebombings and three murders which took place between Carnival Saturday and last Sunday.

The police detained five men, aged 21,22, 24,28, and seized 17 bottles of Molotov cocktails, camouflage gear and weapons during the lock down.

Molotov cocktails had been used in an arson attack on three homes, which sparked an exodus of residents from Picton Road on Sunday that continued yesterday. No one was in sight on Picton Road yesterday.

Investigators said Beverly Hills was targeted because they believed the persons behind the violence at Picton Road were hiding out there.

What the police found

Police and soldiers found the following illegal items during searches at Plaisance Terrace, Canada and Beverly Hills yesterday.

17 bottles of Molotov Cocktail

One bullet proof vest

34 rounds of .38 special ammunition

Two-12 guage cartridges

19 rounds of 7.62 ammunition

Eight camouflage hats

Three ski masks

One camouflage gloves

500 grammes of marijuana

http://www.newsday.co.tt/news/0,73167.html

10 Responses to “‘We in danger’”


  • I GREW UP IN LAVENTILLE BUT LEFT MANY YEARS AGO.IT PAINS MY HEART TO READ WHAT IS GOING ON IN MY HOME TOWN.IT’S HAS BEEN TWO YEARS SINCE MY LAST VISIT BECAUSE MY CHILDREN DON’T WANT TO GO THERE ANYMORE. BUT I WILL ALWAYS REMEMBER MY LIFE IN LAVENTILLE, WHEN EVERY AREA WAS CONNECTED. JOHN JOHN ESTERN QUARRY, PICTON ECT…I DON’T UNDERSTAND WHAT THEY FIGHTENING EACH OTHER FOR IT ALL SO SILLY. LAVENTILLE IS ONE COMMUNITY THATS HOW I KNOW IT. THEY SHOULD BE FIGHTING THE GOVERMENT THEY VOTED FOR. THEY NEED BETTER HOUSING,ROADS,WATER,SCHOOLING,COMMUNITY CENTERS,SPORTING FACILITIES, JOBS..WHY ARE THEY NOT SEEKING THESE THINGS INSTEAD OF KILLING ONE ANOTHER FOR WHAT.? THEY JUST A BUNCH OF LAZY YOUNG PEOPLE WITH NO AMIBITION AND NO PROPER GUIDANCE THIS IS SO SAD…

  • Could any of you tell me why is it the Government have to help the people of Laventille to ” act in a civilized ” manner towards each other and to respect human life?
    It is a given fact that not all the folks in Laventille are in this killing business and criminal conspiracy business and truth be told it is a minority who dominates the majority with their ( the minority) criminal activities.
    How in the world can a minority ever dominate and cow a Majority ?
    Simple answer but factual….” it is racialism,mook!

    If you do not know and understand that then step aside and allow the fearless TNT Republican to educate you ( but it shall cost you because nothing is free and all yuh like too much free ting!)

    I have said it ,I am saying it and I will say it again and again ( regardless of if you hear or not ) that I shall end all organized and violent crime in TNT in eighteen months and within the law and the Constitution and at low cost and as a bonus I shall end the traffic gridlock in two years and allow a system which shall move people and materials safely and rapidly at low cost.
    Now you all can criticize,refuse to publish,laugh at my proposals ( which says SHALL not WILL or CAN but SHALL) and think what you want but I shall deliver if anyone is listening!
    I predict with a certainty that crime in Laventille,central and deep South shall increase as well as in the East and as soon as the criminals begin to sustain monetary losses which they think are unacceptable they shall strike out of Laventille and set up shop elsewhere and they shall also “use” the security forces to assist them in ” clearing rivals off their turf” by ” ratting” their rivals out and simply wait out the law enforcement agents and at the same time set up shop elsewhere ….and so much for this ” dumbo” tactic…a Blind thief with a note in his mouth could easily defeat that stupid tactical move by so called ” crime tacticians who are devoid of effective tactics because they are so dumb that sincerely believe that the criminals did not anticipate that and they underestimate the criminals who make so much more money than they do….please, Mr. Joseph come a lot better than that because the people who are hurting and more fearful than ever are the decent and upright citizens of laventille!
    It is a dumb move,sir! and it is ” still racialism,mook” as the target remains still!

  • Thanks for the post and think people,think,real hard and know in your mind that I am right ((( not because I want a “pat of the back or an Ego boost but to assist you to,perhaps,if you want to, remove the Government’s propaganda blindfold which have blinded the eyes of some of you for so long that the ” expensive and vacuous and highly ineffective actions of the so called ” anti-crime tacticians are in plain sight and some of you all cannot see the folly)))but because I want you folks to seriously consider and act within the Law and the constitution to expose the nonsense and the waste of our Tax and Oil Dollars,time and Law enforcement people on these ” window dressing ” exercises which are designed to give us a ” false sense ” of security and leave the impression that ” The Government” is doing something ( other than blame laying blame left,right and center and demoting and promoting non performing and ineffective Law enforcement officers ) about the horrific Crime situation in Trinidad and Tobago.
    It is written hoping that you will investigate and think and put your immense talents with the pen and your education ( which is way above mine ) to work galvanizing the Media and the grassroots to join in the rising chorus of people who are not just content to be FED up with crime but are willing to legally force the Government to listen and act against crime.
    AS FOR THE VAUNTED SO CALLED ” SUCCESS” OF THE LAVEVENTILLE OPERATIONS….ASK YOURSELVES ,WITH SO MANY PEOPLE DYING OF GUN-SHOT WOUNDS HOW COME THEY HAVE NOT ( ACCORDING TO THE REPORTS ) FOUND A SINGLE GUN????

    IS IT THAT THE CRIMINALS ARE SO AHEAD OF THEM AND HAVE SO MUCH AMMUNITION THAT COULD HAVE AFFORDED TO LEAVE THAT MUCH BEHIND AS THEY CLEARED OFF WITH THEIR GUNS ?
    MOLOTOV COCKTAILS ?
    ANY FOOL COULD WALK INTO A GAS STATION OR GROCERY STORE AND WITHIN (30) MINUTES MAKE AT LEAST FIVE MOLOTOV COCKTAILS!
    ONE BULLET PROOF VEST ? THEM CRIMINALS DID NOT HAVE A USE FOR THAT ONE THEY HAVE PLENTY OF ” KIDNAPPING MONEY ” THEY COULD AFFORD TO HAVE PLEANTY BULLET PROOF VEST AND PLEASE,CAMOUFLAGE HATS!
    YOU COULD BUY THAT PIECE OF MESS IN ANY OLD STORE ON ON THE DRAG!
    FIVE MEN ARRESTED ???
    ARE THEY GOING TO HAVE US BELIEV THAT THESE FIVE MEN ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR ALL THE KIDNAPPINGS AND VIOLENT CRIME AND 300 PLUS MURDERS IN TNT LAST YEAR ?
    ALSO FOR IMPORTING THE NUMEROUS AND SOPHISTICATED FIREARMS WHICH IS CURRENTLY ( BY THE SHOOTINGS YOU CAN TELL ) IN THIS COYNTRY ?
    FIVE HUNDRED GRAMMES OF GANGA ???PLEASE, GIVE THEM PEOPLE BACK DEY GANJA YES FOR IF THEY SMOKE IT THEY GO LOST THE ZEAL TO KILL PEOPLE!
    THIS IS NOT UNPRECEDENTED FOR IN 1071 WHEN ERIC WILLIAMS GOVERNMENT WAS FEARFULL OF THE GUREILLAS THE POLICE ALLOWED FOLKS TO SMOKE GANJA THAT CARNIVAL BECAUSE THEY FELT IT WILL QUET DEM DOWN!
    Angry I am ? Yes I am aren’t you or have we now ( like people in Iraq and Beirut) become inured to the violence and crime that we simply drink a Carib or a Stag and say,” well,it could be worse because at least I eh get shot today!”
    It is such a shame that our TNT with so much educated people and so much money and we have to live this way! What a waste and what a shame!

  • Correctons…(1) It should read in 1971
    (2) GUERILLAS

    (3)that they could have afforded…
    You folks are bright so you understand and know that something is wrong when not a single gun is found ????

  • We all know this Calypso which has been given to us as a Nation and if you folks can recall the State of TNT when this Song was first heard then you can know in your hearts what these Crimnals and inept Political Con Artist has taken from us over the years!
    Dig this song and dig it well!

    PORTRAIT OF TRINIDAD

    Trinidad is My Land,And of it I am proud and glad,But I can`t understand,Why some people does talk it bad,But I know all of them who running dey mouth,Don`t know what dey talking bout,They talk bout here every day,But the right thing they would never say.

    Like Our sportsmen being rated among the best,Our scholars have sat and passed every test,To put us along side the rest,And Our Pitch Lake is the greatest one of its kind,Our sugar and oil is really refine,So you see my friends,This is a real King Solomon`s mine.

    They does talk a lot of nonsense,me ain`t know what they doing it for,About so much violence,Man you could swear that we fighting war,We have our delinquents to face just like any other place,Man thethings they does say bout here,Is realy to much for me to bear.

    And My people are daily making progress,Without any form of stupidness,And in this way we bong to make succes,For when we moving,We all move like one body,No bickering between you and me,For our policy stands for racial equality.

    All of them whey talking,they either drunk or staring mad,Or maybe they forgetting,Mrs.Universe belongs to Trinidad,And yet we have men of high talent and skill,With high hope of improving still,And if you think all this is a lie,The Mighty Sniper will tell you why,For our steelband is the best talent in this world,By calypsoes our stories are told,with rhythm to touch your soul,And Trinidad,this lovely land of my My Birth,Small but overwhelming in worth,And Carnival is the greatest festival on earth.

    Now when a stranger spending,A little time in this lovely isle,Every day you see him,He always have a happy smile,And when is time for him to depart,He would say with tears in his heart,I`ll be back,you can bet your life,And if I can`t come I go send my wife,And when he tell you he really wants to come,To drink a little rum and have plenty fun,In this island in the sun,For Trinidad as foreigners do recall,It doesn`t matter whether big or small,Or if you rich or poor

    Friends we cater for one and all.

  • Very astute observation Mr. Williamn concerning the photo opportunity raid in Laventille. They allegedly broke into a den of criminals and could not find the weapons of trade, used to terrorise the citizens, commit murders and send the signal to the broader community that they mean business. This is akin to breaking into a rum shop and finding no booze!

    When the people organize themselves and begin to make serious demands of their elected government, then and only then would they be treated as if they had common sense. This type of clowning by Paul, Joseph, Manning, Panday, and their underlings would immediately cease in the face of storming the Parliament, halting the farcical “crime debate” and insisting to be heard. A general strike to protest government’s inepte response to crime and criminals should also be given priority attention. If we must suffer, then let us do so together. Shut down production of oil and natural gas—the wealth is not being distributed anyway so it should not make much difference to those of us who are being victimized by street criminals and those official positions.

    If you want solutions you must prepare to act. The time for ole talk and more talk is over!

  • Corrections. Last line in second to last paragraph should read; “and those holding official positions.”

  • Mr.John this was an old decrepit tactic used by the Police back in the 1970’s when they had problems combating criminals or when they needed to declare a State of Emergency to slow down the labour Movement.
    They made these raids and the “Usual Suspects” were “Rastas.”
    They always found the same sawed off shot gun.pipe gun and old rusty revolvers and ammunition.
    Then the media picked up the story and run with it spreading fear and terror to the population at large and laying the foundation for a State of Emergency to shut up “George Weeks ” and company!
    It is like Bush and his,” If we leave now ,the terrorist will win!”
    So he could pass his Anti-Terror ” get his buddies rich ” bills!
    Did you notice MR.Daniels is silent on this ?
    Should not the ” Great African Chief” be rushing into battle with his poison pen at the ready and swatting down these attacks upon the poor and oppressed Africans in Laventille ?
    He is strangely silent…do you think he is afraid to offend the ” Emperor Patos?”

  • I am not intimidated by anyone whose intellect cannot point out to him or her that racial ideology was an invention of the slavemaster to justify a system that was inhumane. Anyone who applies this thinking is in essence trying to buttress the position of those in whose interest it is to perpetuate and extend that system which, in its present form, is wage slavery. In TnT it is the criminal exploitation of workers who are paid low wages such that they could barely afford necessities.

    Racial ideology was introduced into Trinidad after the manumission of 1838 by the planters who were experiencing a sugar production crisis because of the labor situation. They wanted competition between African former slave and Indian indentured laborers to drive down the cost of labor as their fixed capital lay idle or operated at very low capacity.

    Anyone who cannot see the program of racial ideology and how it detracts from building unity and solidarity so as to confront the real as opposed to some imaginary enemy, is not going to be enlisted in the struggle of the people of TnT to be free from foreign domination and local oppression. That you may be sure about Mr. Williamn, no matter how intelligent they try to sound or to insult you with 10 gallon words and phrases they themselves could not explain if they saw it on a test.

  • Gang war is stupidness. I say so because if not for money something else. As some people say yuh live by d gun then yuh go dead by d gun. Plain talk bad manners.

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