Caribbean News Round-up

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‘Confusing’ tactic used by Venezuelan political party

VenezuelaCARACAS, Venezuela (AP) — Venezuelan election officials say they are taking action against a small party accused of trying to confuse voters in the December 6 legislative elections.

The South American country’s elections board said it was banning advertisements by the MIN Unity party. Election board member Luis Rondon said on his Twitter account that the party appeared to be intentionally trying to sow confusion.

Critics say that MIN Unity has mimicked the slogan and logo of Venezuela’s main opposition coalition, known as MUD Unity. In one district, MIN Unity is even running a candidate with the same name as the incumbent, who belongs to the opposition group.

MIN Unity leaders have said that was a coincidence and that the opposition was making unfair accusations because it feared competition.

 

Police seize large quantity of ganja, US$83k in Jamaica

arrest[Jamaica Observer] – The Narcotics Police say they have seized 3,304 pounds of ganja and US$83,900 in two separate incidents in the Corporate Area and St Catherine on Wednesday.

In the first incident, reports are that about 10:30 am, a 42-year-old Venezuelan national arrived at the Norman Manley International Airport and was about to check in for a flight to Curacao when he was stopped. His suitcase was searched and US$83,900 was allegedly found concealed in several items including shampoo bottles. The police were summoned and the man arrested.

Later that day about 3:30 pm, in Portmore, St Catherine, lawmen were on operation in the Independence City area. During the operation, a Toyota Hiace bus that was parked on a property was searched and knitted bags with 656 parcels of ganja weighing 3,304 pounds were found. The street value of the ganja is approximately J$11.6 million. One man was taken into custody in connection with the find.

The police say investigations are ongoing in both matters and it is expected that the men will be interviewed and charged shortly.

 

Trini wrongfully convicted in US murders now back in hometown

Charles Pierre
Charles Pierre

[Trinidad Express] – A Trinidadian man, acquitted of a 2002 double murder in The United States, has been deported home after serving more than 12 years in a New York prison.

According to a report on the website www.twcnews.com, Charles “Teddy” Pierre, was deported on Tuesday.

The report says: “Pierre had been convicted in 2002 of killing Clara Sconiers and Thomas Reed and then setting their home on Rochester’s First Street on fire.”

It said: “He was granted a new trial when new information came to light”.

That new information, the report said, concerned another man, Darrell Boyd, who is serving time for a different crime. Boyd allegedly admitted to his cell mate and ex-wife that he was responsible for the murders.

It took a Monroe County Jury less than two hours to return a not guilty verdict on all counts in Pierre’s double murder and arson retrial in August, the report added.

Pierre was not immediately a free man, as he was turned over to immigration authorities and was held in the federal detention center in Batavia until his deportation.

The website quoted Pierre’ attorney, Van White, as saying: “Charles Pierre, I’m happy to report is in Trinidad with the sun to his shoulders and his grandchildren in front of his face. He’s very happy and we want to thank everybody including Time Warner who originally broke the story with an interview with Kathy Boyd, the wife of the true killer. That set off a chain of events that has Charles probably standing on a beach right now.”

 

‘Stop transporting children in car trunks’, TA tells taxi drivers

ROUTE-TAXIS[Jamaica Observer] – The Transport Authority (TA) today warned route taxi operators, who are allegedly transporting children in the trunk of motor cars, to “discontinue this illegal and most inhumane practice immediately or face prosecution”.

In a release this morning, TA said it has received reports that route taxi operators have been placing children in the cargo (trunk) compartment of sedans in a bid to increase their earnings on each trip.

The authority has condemned this practice and has instructed its operations division to intensify activities to stamp out this inhumane practice, which they said “seriously compromises the safety and comfort of passengers”. 

According to Donald Foster, managing director at the authority, “any operator found to be violating the rights of passengers, to a safe and comfortable ride by overloading the vehicles will be prosecuted under section 28 (3) of the Road Traffic Regulations (1938)”.

Foster added that: “the Transport Authority will be engaging the Hierarchy of the Jamaica Constabulary Force to implement strategies to also prosecute these offenders for “cruelty to children” under section 9 (1) (b) of the Child Care and Protection Act (2005)”.

 

‘Amazing disrespect’

Prime Minister Dr. Keith Mitchell
Prime Minister Dr. Keith Mitchell

[Trinidad express] – Grenada’s Prime Minister Dr Keith Mitchell yesterday slammed what he called an “amazing level of disrespect” on the part of West Indies Cricket Board president Dave Cameron, as pressure continued to mount on the beleaguered Board to meet urgently with Caricom leaders over the Governance Review Panel report.

Mitchell, the chairman of Caricom’s Cricket Governance Committee, stopped short of issuing an ultimatum to the WICB but urged Cameron to rethink his decision not to accommodate a meeting with regional Heads before the Board of Directors meeting on December 12 in St Lucia.

Cameron has been adamant about the WICB’s inability to accommodate the Caribbean leaders prior to the already scheduled meeting and reiterated this position in written communication to Caricom Secretary-General Irwin LaRocque on Tuesday.

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