Police probe ordered on AG’s children gun issue

Images which surfaced online allegedly showing a cabinet minister’s relatives with high-tech weapons

Images which surfaced online allegedly showing a cabinet minister’s relatives with high-tech weapons

By Renuka Singh
Oxctober 14, 2016 – trinidadexpress.com

Acting Police Commissioner Harold Phillip has ordered an investigation into how the children of Attorney General Faris al-Rawi came to be holding high-powered military weapons.

The Express also understands here is no written police record that Al-Rawi received any death threats that prompted the gun training of his two young children.

While Al-Rawi has not yet confirmed that the pictures are of his children, both Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley and the Defence Force, in their respective statements, have linked the children to Al-Rawi.
Full Article : trinidadexpress.com

Time for full story on teens with guns

Published: Saturday, October 15, 2016

EXTRACT:

Unfortunately what we have heard so far from the Attorney General and Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley are statements which deflect from the possible illegality of the acts, not admitting to anything, a frontal attack on MP Roodal Moonilal—who claimed he did what he had to do—and unsubstantiated allegations against Defence Force personnel.

A statement from the senior public affairs officer of the Defence Force Major Al Alexander is more forthcoming. Major Alexander said the AG’s family members “were not involved in the training exercise; the purpose of them being there was for them to understand in particular emergencies what is done.” Further, apparently explaining why the weapons were placed into the hands of the teenagers, Major Alexander compared it to when exhibitions are held by the Defence Force and there is the curiosity of someone wanting to hold and feel a weapon.

“It was really to remove the fear and apprehension,” said the officer. And “we allowed them to hold it, the gun,” he suggests.

The difficulty there is whether such action is legal and who has to take responsibility if the act of handing the weapons to teenagers is not legal.

http://www.guardian.co.tt/editorial/2016-10-14/time-full-story-teens-guns

4 Responses to “Police probe ordered on AG’s children gun issue”


  • From: The Leader of the Opposition

    Date: 16th October 2016

    WHY AG FARIS AL-RAWI MUST RESIGN OR BE FIRED

    *The Facts: Both the Prime Minister and the Army have admitted that these
    are the AG’s children

    Pictures of children handling high-powered military weapons have been made
    public. The Prime Minister has admitted in Parliament that they are the
    children of AG Faris Al-Rawi. The Defence Force has also confirmed this.
    Despite these admissions, the AG has steadfastly refused to confirm or deny
    whether the children are his.

    The police have launched a criminal investigation to determine how these
    children came into possession of such dangerous and sophisticated weapons.
    The Defence Force has also established a Board of Inquiry to ascertain how
    this managed to happen as civilians are not supposed to handle weapons.

    It is most unfortunate that the irresponsible conduct of AG Al-Rawi has put
    children in such a precarious position. This is not about young children so
    much so as it is about the rule of law. Recently, a father was charged for
    wilful neglect of his child which resulted in the child drowning during
    floods.

    Our Constitution injuncts us to ensure that no one is above the law as we
    are all subject to the law. The perception of a criminal justice system
    based on different strokes for different folks will further damage public
    confidence in a critical pillar of our democracy.

    *Conflicts of Interest: Defence Council, National Security Council, Police
    Complaints Authority, Cabinet and Legal Advisor to the State*

    The AG has said that this burning issue does not affect the performance of
    his duties and his job. I respectfully beg to differ as it directly impacts
    on the performance of many of his duties.

    The AG is a member of the *Defence Council* established under the
    Defence Act, Chap 14:01. This Council is the tribunal established in law to
    receive complaints from military officers. This is the avenue for redress
    for soldiers who have been targeted, victimized, intimidated and harassed.

    Thus, if a soldier is being pressured to massage his testimony at the
    Inquiry to exculpate the AG and his family, he will essentially have to
    lodge a complaint to the Defence Council of which the very AG is a member.

    The AG sits on the *National Security Council*. The heads of all the
    security agencies including the Defence Force and the Police Service report
    to this Council chaired by the Prime Minister. It would be easy for the AG
    to use this position to ‘pressure’ and influence the relevant security
    agency which is investigating this incident involving his children.

    Police Officers can be investigated by the *Police Complaints Authority*
    for misconduct. The AG is the line minister for the PCA which can be used
    to apply indirect pressure on officers involved in the investigation by
    suddenly subjecting them to investigations by the PCA or, otherwise.

    The AG is the *legal adviser of the State*. He represents and advises
    the police service and the defence force. Should legal advice be required
    during the course of these investigations, is it fair that they should have
    to turn to the person whose family is the subject of the investigation for
    guidance?

    The AG is a *Cabinet Member*. He will be called upon to advise the
    Cabinet on sensitive matters pertaining to the police and army whilst these
    agencies investigate him for an incident that could implicate serving
    officers. He is compromised and justice and fairness will not be seen to be
    done in such matters.

    *MINISTER YOUNG: CONFLICT OF INTEREST*

    Minister Young usually acts for AG Al Rawi when need arises. He is however
    a witness to these serious criminal offences and is therefore equally
    compromised. His strident utterances in Parliament have confirmed his bias
    in favour of AG Al Rawi.

    *BUYOUT OF THE LEAVE OF THE CHIEF OF DEFENCE STAFF*

    The Minister of National Security has admitted that last Thursday, Cabinet
    agreed to buy out the leave of the present Chief of Defence Staff (CDS).
    The government has now compromised the Chief of Defence in its haste to
    protect the AG and Minister Young. The CDS is the person with ultimate
    responsibility for the Inquiry (which the army has promised the public)
    into these pictures of children handling sophisticated high grade military
    weapons.

    Several questions now arise:

    1.

    Given the clear conflict of interest, did AG Al-Rawi and Minister Stuart
    Young recuse themselves from this Cabinet meeting? They are both involved
    in the issue at hand and are plainly witnesses to the commission of serious
    criminal offences. It should be noted that Minister Young was not
    accompanied by his family.
    2.

    The Prime Minister, having jumped to the defence of his AG and
    unjustifiably attacked the army by accusing it of leaking these pictures
    and condemning the officers responsible, is a potential witness for the
    Board of Inquiry and Police investigation as he clearly possesses relevant
    evidence about this “leak” and where it came from.
    3.

    Having taken the side of the AG and Minister Young, he is himself now
    involved in the matter and has compromised himself. He is biased in favour
    of his AG. He has taken a side even before the Inquiry or the police
    investigation has started. Did he also recuse himself from this Cabinet
    meeting in the interest of transparency and fairness?
    4.

    This sudden buyout of the CDS’s leave on the eve of this Inquiry will be
    perceived as a payoff to secure his political support and cooperation. The
    Defence Force issued a press release in which it stated that it has
    “traditionally provided close protection for national strategic leaders”
    and hence the AG and his family were invited to their base for training.
    5.

    Since then, several former AG’s (John Jeremie SC, Ramesh Lawrence
    Maharaj SC, Anand Ramlogan SC and Garvin Nicholas) have in fact confirmed
    that no such training was ever offered to them far less their families.
    Several questions now arise: When and why did the Army suddenly decide to
    offer military training with high-grade weapons to the AG and his family?
    How come no other AG was afforded similar training in the face of death
    threats to themselves and their families?

    Indeed, I can confirm that at no time was I, as Prime Minister, or my
    family offered such training by the Defence Force.

    This buyout of leave of the CDS will undermine the authority of the CDS and
    erode public confidence in the Inquiry and lead to the inescapable
    perception that it is designed to provide a political scapegoat in the form
    of innocent soldiers to justify the Prime Minister’s baseless attack on the
    army and save the AG and his family from criminal prosecution. The Prime
    Minister’s attack on the army has put the CDS in an untenable and
    compromising position which the CDS did not deserve.

    *Clear Violation of several Laws: The Rule of Law*

    This is a serious matter involving the commission of several criminal
    offences which carry serious fines and terms of imprisonment:

    *Section 6 of the* *Firearms Act* Chap 16:01 – prohibits a person from
    having a firearm in his possession without being the holder of a Firearm
    User’s Licence.

    *Section 8 of the* *Firearms Act* – prohibits a person, other than
    Police, Member of Defence Force or holder of an FUL from carrying a firearm
    in a public place.

    *Section 9 of the Firearms Act* – makes it an offence for any person to
    transfer, test or prove a firearm for any person he has reason to believe
    is under the age of 25 years.

    *Section 3 of the Military Training (Prohibition) Act*, Chap 15:04 –
    prohibits the carrying out of training in the use of firearms without
    written authorization from the President

    *Section 4 of the Military Training (Prohibition) Act *- makes it an
    offence to assemble in any place to carry out such training in the use of
    firearms.

    *Section 8 of the Children Act 12 of 2012* – prohibits any person from
    giving a firearm to a child, a child being defined as anyone under the age
    of 18.

    The police investigation will have to clarify the role of the AG and
    Minister Stuart Young in light of the fact that they were both present at
    the material time and also receiving similar military training with
    weapons. It is clear that they will have to give statements. The idea that
    the AG was not with his children and did not know what they were doing
    rings hollow and is extremely suspicious as it is doubtful whether a
    rational parent will leave their young children unsupervised for long in
    such a dangerous environment.

    *AG Al Rawi’s Clearance of Himself*

    *“I’m not the subject of any police probe/inquiry. Nor could I possibly be
    the subject of any such, as I have nothing to answer. I have nothing to
    worry about.*”

    These words demonstrate AG Al Rawi’s unfitness and unsuitability to
    continue to hold the office of Attorney General. The words of AG Al Rawi
    are simply self-serving declarations of a man in peril, seeking to disguise
    his incompetence, prop up his credibility and be a judge and jury in his
    own cause. The AG cannot be a judge in his own cause and clear himself.

    The statements made by the AG are reckless, irresponsible and improper
    having regard to these on-going investigations. As Attorney General, Mr. Al
    Rawi is constitutionally vested with the role as legal advisor to the
    Executive. This is confirmed by section 76(2) of the Constitution. There
    are intricate factual and legal issues involved in this investigation.

    It is inevitable that legal advice will be sought from different quarters
    of the State machinery and the chief advisor to each and every arm of the
    State is the Attorney General. By his clear and unambiguous statements the
    Chief Legal Advisor of the government has already declared that he could
    not possibly be the subject of any investigation. Did Mr. Al Rawi consider
    the effect of such statements before he made them? Would this declaration
    not affect the exercise of the discretion of those who may hold the view
    that Mr. Al Rawi’s actions ought to be investigated?

    By his own words the Attorney General has prejudiced this investigation. He
    has already publicly proclaimed that he cannot be the subject of any such
    probe or inquiry. Mr. Al Rawi must know that the decision as to whether he
    is to be the subject of any probe is one for the independent Commissioner
    of Police. If he is to be the subject of any probe by the Defence Force
    that will be a decision for the Chief of Defence Staff.

    It was entirely improper, reckless and irresponsible for the Attorney
    General to have made these statements. Such statements can only serve to
    prejudice any investigation and instil a degree of fear of prejudice in
    those that are to conduct any such investigation.

    That Mr. Al Rawi continues to hold the position as Attorney General while
    these investigations are on-going is entirely untenable as it is
    constitutionally improper and does not promote good administration.

    While in government I had the courage and strength to place the public
    interest first when issues as the present arose. Hence, I removed several
    cabinet Ministers including the Attorney General when necessary. I did the
    right thing regardless of the consequences.

    The actions of the present Prime Minister will determine whether his
    clarion calls for Ministers in the PP government to step aside or be
    removed until they had been cleared of wrongdoing was hypocritical and
    cheap politics of convenience or whether it was based on higher principles
    of transparent leadership.

    There is only one option open to the Prime Minister now and it is to
    relieve Mr. Al Rawi of his present portfolio until these investigations are
    completed.

    *Kamla Persad-Bissessar*

  • Well, well , well, and what do we have here folks? ‘Me think,’our AG ,Mr GQ himself – Faris al-Rawi, has gotten himself into a pickle, or put differently, has his … ummm….Weennie,stuck in his zipper , and so both him ,and the political PR department,and handlers ,are pulling out all stops, to save his hide.
    Lost in the debate ,are the following:- Parental responsibility, Political accountability/ transparency , security / Safety mismanagement, and non adherence to Constitutional affairs.
    Nope , we can’t have yuppie kids, breeching our laws , while low end , poor children, and their parents, across T&T , can get arrested , and sent away for even having a plastic ,toy gun , on top the outdoor ,smelly latrine,si? Guns are nothing to play with Mr Al ah Wi, when 98% of the murders committed in the past 6 years , were the result of firearms.

    I’ve said it before , but it’s worth repeating folk. Our T&T , is not the same place it was politically , 6 years ago , when the Kamla led , PP regime took office.
    Let’s just say that the Opposition Leader, Auntie K, and the new PP Piranha , in Uncle Moonilal, smells blood. They are therefore circling with glee, and who can really blame them?
    Got to give them both credit , and yes , they have put forth a fine case , that can justify AG All ah wi , must step down – in true- British Westminster fashion-until this impropriety is settled.
    Do the right thing Mr Rowley, as was done for pro PNM POS Mayor, and your ousted , Housing Minister /Cabinet MP Marlene McDonald.
    Oh , and by de way, there are those who would say – serves him right , to AG All ah wi. He is almost 2 years in office , and all Mr Do nothing- QG -$25000 suit wearing AG- All Ahwi , has done is, travel the globe , attending opaque legal conferences, make idle treats , about corruption , by the previous regime, and yet to date – not a single charge was place on the table.
    Sorry Mr AG , but your life , can in no way be threatened in much the same way as legal luminary Dana Seetahal, or the late former stalwart Ex Police turn AG ,Selwyn Richardson,and why , you ask?
    Well ,let’s just say, bad boys , and gals, know they have nada to fear since you, and your all talk ,yet no action- political gang ,assumed office.
    Por ejemplo, politically disgraced, weed head- ex PP MP ,Anil Roberts ,is still frolicking in perhaps Santo Domingo ,or Thailand , with unaccounted ,$34 Million -some in de loop say- his PM Kamla ,allowed him to keep- all to ensure his .wink/ wink -silence.
    Ex AG Anan -de RamGoat Lover , still has his 5 imported , Range Rovers , purchased on an un elected , Cabinet Minister’s salary.
    He knows there is nothing to fear about that disgusting , Prison Lawyer gate fiasco, amongst other acts of malfeasance /or more so, criminalities , committed with his blessings, before he was kicked to the curb.
    Sorry Mr GQ -Allahwi, but if you can purchase 25 grand a pop , GQ /Ralph Lauren , in Paris, London, and Manhattan ,then you can afford to provide extra security , for yourself,and family , due to alleged threats.
    Can’t afford to burden the state , then once caught, with your rear end expose , try to throw members of our protective service under the bus.
    Oh , and by the Way , Mr Allah wi, be reminded ,that this ain’t Acting Commissioner Williams Police Service anymore.For de record, the new COP , is a man of integrity , who want’s to get the acting label removed from his name , before the next 2020 General Election. As for the death treats , it is stated that no official record exist, of any such threats being made , so come again.
    Sorry Auntie K,we know why you are worked up, over the forced retirement of your Defense Force Chief, but most of T&T , ain’t care about that.
    The career carcasses ,of many Public Senior Public servants , who were forced to go on permanent leave- during your pro purging stewardship- are littered all across La Trinity.
    As a matter of fact , I ran into one such fellow, only today , who reminded me of the role that politics played, to get him out of the way.
    Nice meeting you , ex DCP Piggot.
    Sorry Mr Prime Minister, but tell us when you decided that members of our Military were untrustworthy? Well, it was you , who continued the Basdeo Panday, Patrick Manning, and Kamla tradition, of elevating Military blokes , to the post of Minister of National Security, while also burdening our exasperated / micro managed ,Police Service , with these joint patrol foolishness- with little to show – for obvious reasons.
    Last I checked , our military was created , to protect our country ,from external threats, not wipe the butts , of spoiled , gun loving MP kids,among other things.
    One of the major lessons , we have learned , while observing , pro military ,political dungheaps ,such as Pakistan, and Nigeria , is that when the military is forced to do too much on the domestic front, moral of the Police becomes low, and said military, tend to be ill prepared to do the real duties , they were mandated to do .
    Just saying.
    Sorry Mr shoot from the lip/ hip PM Rowley. We noticed how quick you were to try and castrate Members of the military , you suspected leaked the story , and to that I say – so what if they leaked the story , or some inside hater , from the Al Ahh WI family , decided to post the pics?
    You can’t adore whistle blowers , when you are out of power , but then once in charge , wish to pick and choose , which ones you like. In the name of transparency -Give it a rest!
    In ending ,let me add folks , that I see this , as useful development in our democracy, and it’s one of the reasons ,why I wish to see a vibrant Opposition, ready, and willing ,to present an alternative , while simultaneously , holding the government forces, hands to the symbolic fire.
    Hopefully, they will likewise see the need ,to join with the government , where appropriate , in support of issues/ policies ,initiatives ,and legislations, that can bolster the interest of all T&T, si?
    Stay Vigilant T&T.

  • “Threat assessment is a structured group process used to evaluate the risk posed by a student or another person, typically as a response to an actual or perceived threat or concerning behavior. Threat assessment as a process was developed by the Secret Service as a response to incidents of school violence.”

    Does the photograph identify a strategy for National Security in undertaking for the safety of the youngsters? the response from Al Rawi is very short of the competency that is required by an AG

  • ‘Threat assessment, the Secret Service ,as a response to School violence?’This comedian is kidding ,right? Ok TriniRawoil, & this is yesterday’s news.Just maybe ,it’s about darn time ,you come in from the cold , mi country hating Pizanno.
    ‘Me think, ‘ you have been reading too many James Patterson , and Tom Clancy, Spy trillers.
    Tell you what, Trini RawOils,since Oropuche East UNC -Piranha MP- Moonilal broached this subject in Parliament,and your Opposition Leader Kamla,penned her letter of outrage ,against AG All-ah-wi,at least 25 people have died ,from gun violence in La Trinity, and least you forgot ,our desperate Venezuelan neighbors,just released, a few rabid, Trini Islamists , who are now free to return home , and probably continue to wreck havoc , under the guise of religious freedoms.

    http://www.guardian.co.tt/news/2016-10-17/five-trinis-locked-venezuela-wives-hope-speedy-return

    Now seeing dat you are a big Security Threat assessment fan,Trini Raw oils, give us your take, as to who pose a larger threat to society- domestic , or international.
    Is it this despicable ,female Trini Born criminal creature ,Annie Dookhan who has wrecked so many innocent lives , or the recently released prisoners , I’ve just mentioned, who can now return home to …..ummmmm….pray daily , in local Mosques,and indoctrinate kids?

    http://www.guardian.co.tt/news/2016-04-12/trini-born-chemist-released-us-jail

    Trust me when I say , nothing will come out of this escapist issue.Well again, I’m hoping that I’m wrong.
    Your desperate leaders , and by extension , De tribe , will just have to await the decision of the Appeal Court ,over the General election, recall vote , if they wish to see the back of Mr QU himself -AG ,All-Ah Wi.
    A sixth tells me , that even if -heavens forbid- the Courts rule against the Government, the PM will make him a Senator ,so that he can hang on in the Cabinet, as the Nation’s AG- just like Anon de RamGoat lover.
    Yep , Moonilal cares about T&T children welfare, but not about the Thousands of poor ,9, 10, 11, 12 , 14, and 16 year old,Indo Trini, innocent Girls , who were victims of Islamist/ Hindustani ,Statutory rapes,by ‘licentious -Tribal hombres ,’ over the decades ,in La Trinity. Go figure.
    T&T does not -as far as I know -manufacture guns/ small arms, and yet every day , we hear of wanton murders , and mayhem ,that are caused by persons in possession of same.
    Did I mention ,that many were able to slip through the cracks of our porous borders- the result of the previous regime , scuttling plans ,to obtain 3 border patrol ships for the Coast Guard?

    http://www.trinidadexpress.com/article/20150421/LOCAL/150429993

    As for the customs front ,this big fish , and his pals ,got caught , but guess how many more , and their buddies ,were able to elude customs, with who knows what in their ladened suitcase? Let me here you Mr threat assessment, Trini RawOils.
    Here is the deal . If AG All-Ah- Wi, or any member of his family is guilty of a crime , hey ,cut dem up into little pieces , and feed them all ,to the Lions ,at the decrepit Emperor Valley Zoo, for all I care.
    Once that is finish HOWEVER , then let’s end the repeated distractions, and get on with the business of protecting all of T&T,si?

    Stay Vigilant people!

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