Gangs framing popular cops


Front line police personnel, especially those on special squads, have told The STAR that organised criminal gangs have been targeting feared lawmen by intentionally accusing them of instances of police brutality and questionable shootings.

The lawmen claim to have noticed an islandwide trend in which ‘brand name’ policemen, even though nowhere near the scene of a shooting, were being named by citizens as having carried out such acts.

These citizens, the police claim, are under the control of community enforcers who use the ruse as a ploy to have highly recognised crime fighters reassigned pending investigations.

The Star was told of a case in the St Catherine South Police Division, in which a woman reported that a popular cop had “taken away” her babyfather and had murdered him. Upon investigating, it was discovered that the policeman in question was halfway around the world in China.

Renowned crime fighters

Though Deputy Superintendent Clive Blair of St Catherine South could not confirm the incident, one of Jamaica’s most renowned crime fighters, Superintendent Cornwall ‘Bigga’ Ford, head of the Flying Squad, confirmed the gangs’ modus operandi in trying to rid the streets of tough crime fighters.

“We hear it and the police high command is aware of it,” said Ford, a 36-year veteran whose street experience has spanned decades of infamous gangsters such as Anthony ‘General Starkey’ Tingle, Wayne ‘Sandokhan’ Smith, Nathaniel ‘Natty’ Morgan, and Christopher ‘Natty Chris’ Henry. “We know it is a ploy they have been using. Not that alone, other things to get people off the street, people who are very active and will pursue them at any costs.”

Affected cops believe the gangsters are using the bark of Jamaicans For Justice and the bite of the Independent Commission of Investigations (INDECOM) to gain an advantage on the streets.

Volatile areas

A police source from the St Andrew North Division, which has volatile areas such as lanes off Red Hills Road and Cassava Piece on its radar, said the gangsters are no fools.

“There is a concerted effort by organised criminal gangs to use organisations such as INDECOM, Jamaicans For Justice and other well-thinking organisations as weapons against well known police figures,” he said.

“This has the effect of dissuading the officer from engaging these complainants, as any interaction would then seem to be malicious on the part of the officer,” he explained, naming some of his colleagues whose aliases at times impossibly place them all over Jamaica.

“I have heard all types of stories with the more popular names being ‘Half A Dog’ from Spanish Town, ‘Bad Man Adams’ from Clarendon and ‘Jason’ from Portmore,” he pointed out. “As soon as a policeman, or even woman, becomes renowned for no-nonsense measures, all of a sudden they become targets for malicious complaints against them, no matter where in the world they are.”

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Swiss open first drive-in sex garage


Switzerland opened its first drive-in sex garages today, amid a debate over the moral and cost implications of the controversial initiative.
The drive-in “sex boxes” as they are being called, will be officially opened on August 26, as part of a drive by authorities in Zurich to regulate prostitution, combat pimping and improve security for sex workers.
The nine garage-style structures, located in a former industrial zone in the west of the city, have been organised with typically Swiss precision.
Drivers will have to follow a clearly marked route along which up to 40 prostitutes will be stationed.
Once they have chosen one of the women and negotiated a fee, they will drive into one of the wooden sheds, which are hung with posters advocating the use of condoms and warning of the risk of Aids.
The sex boxes are equipped with alarms which the prostitutes can activate if they feel in danger from a client.
The site is only open to drivers of cars – pedestrians and men on motorbikes are not allowed – and will operate from early evening until 5am each day.
The sex boxes are one of several measures intended to reduce the large numbers of prostitutes plying their trade in residential areas and in the city centre, including a ban on soliciting along the Sihlquai river embankment.
Men who solicit street workers outside three new approved zones, including the cluster of sex boxes, will face fines of up to 450 francs (£310).
“We want to regulate prostitution because until now it was the law of the jungle,” said Michael Herzig, from Zurich’s social welfare department, when the initiative was announced.
“It was the pimps who decided the prices, for instance. We are trying to reach a situation which is better for the prostitutes themselves, for their health and security and also for people who live in Zurich.”
The £1.4 million project was approved by voters in Zurich last year in a referendum.
While prostitution is legal in Switzerland, sex workers have to pay a tax of five Swiss francs (£3.50) each night that they work.
Zurich authorities said the number of prostitutes working in the city had increased markedly in recent years, with many of them coming from Eastern Europe, particularly Hungary.

Shock As Two Women Raped In Newcastle City Centre In Just Over 24 Hours


Two rapists are being hunted after unconnected early morning attacks on lone women in the centre of Newcastle within just over 24 hours of each other.

Police have moved to reassure women in the city that every effort is being made to track down the two sex attackers.

They stressed that although the two attacks, one in the early hours of Friday and the other in the early hours of Saturday, were in the same area and strikingly similar they do not believe the same man is reponsible for both.
In the most recent attack a 46-year-old woman was raped at approximately 5am on Saturday, August 17, close to Bath Lane on a grassed area near the city walls.

It is believed she met the man in the smoking area at the rear of Switch Bar, on Scotswood Road, and then walked with him to the grassy bank.

The man is described as being 6ft tall, in his late 20s of normal build with dark wavy hair. He was wearing a white shirt, black matching trousers and jacket, and dark brown shoes.

Detective Sergeant Helen Anderson, from Northumbria Police’s Rape Investigation Team, said: “An investigation is underway to identify the man responsible for this attack and we are appealing for anyone with information to contact us.

“In particular we would ask people in the Switch Bar or One Bar to think back and ask themselves whether they remember seeing this man or know who he is.

“We would also like to hear from anyone who remembers seeing a man and woman in the area of Bath Lane on a grassed area near the city walls in the early hours of Saturday, August 17.”

The first incident happened at around at 3am on Friday morning in Dispensary Lane, behind the Gate complex in Newcastle.
t is believed the 19-year-old victim had met her attacker at the Eazy Street bar, on Westmorland Road, at around 2.40am, and then walked with him around the city centre towards the Gate.
He is described as being around 24-years-old, about 6ft tall, of slim build, with short dark spiky hair, he was wearing a white t-shirt with three-quarter length sleeves and had orange and white face paint under his eyes and on his forehead.

Police are appealing for anyone who recognises the man or who saw him walking with a woman in a dark coloured dress to contact them.

Chief Superintendent Gary Calvert: “We understand that incidents of this nature cause concern and I would like to reassure people we are doing everything possible to identify the person responsible.”

Anyone affected by rape or sexual violence can contact the REACH Sexual Assault Referral Centre for help, advice and access to support services. Telephone: (0191) 2219222 (leave a message out of office hours) or online at http://www.reachsarc.org.uk where links to other agencies are also available.

Anyone with information on either attack is asked to contact police on 101 ext 69191 or ring the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

Man Posts Photos Of Dead Wife


A man in Costa Rica allegedly killed his wife and confessed by sending relatives a photo of her body via the smartphone application WhatsApp, according to news reports.

The incident is reported to have happened on Saturday in the village of Huacas, 120 miles northwest of the capital San Jose.

The 29-year-old man led relatives to the woman’s body and then sent messages telling people where he himself could be found, TV television station Repretel said.

He was later arrested without a struggle.

The woman may have been strangled, police said later. The motive for the killing is not known.

The death is seen by many in the normally peaceful Central American country as a copycat killing, following a similar case recently in Miami.

There, a man allegedly killed his wife and then posted a photo and confession on Facebook.

George Zimmerman’s lawyer chides him for visiting gun factory


George Zimmerman’s lawyer has chided him for visiting a Florida firearms factory that makes the type of gun he used to kill unarmed black teenager Trayvon Martin last year.

Zimmerman in July was acquitted of murder in Martin’s death in a racially charged case that polarized the U.S. public and raised questions about Florida’s loose gun laws and equal justice.

“We understand how George visiting the factory that produces the gun used to shoot Trayvon Martin is seen as inappropriate,” Shawn Vincent, spokesman for Zimmerman’s lawyer Mark O’Mara, told Reuters on Friday.

Celebrity news website TMZ posted a photo of Zimmerman at the Kel-Tec plant in Cocoa, shaking hands with an employee and grinning.

The website reported that he asked questions about the legality of buying a Kel-Tec KSG, a 12-gauge pump-action shotgun.

Zimmerman, 29, shot Martin, who was 17 years old, in the heart with a 9mm Kel-Tec pistol.

Zimmerman was a volunteer watchman for a gated community in central Florida when he killed Martin in February 2012.

Martin was walking back to the town house where he was staying after a trip to a nearby convenience store to buy Skittles candy and a can of iced tea.

Prosecutors argued that Zimmerman, who is white and Hispanic, profiled Martin as a criminal, pursued him and killed him. Zimmerman said Martin attacked him and that he acted in self-defence.

Less than three weeks after his acquittal, Zimmerman was stopped for speeding on a Texas highway 25 miles southeast of Dallas, and notified the officer that he was carrying a gun in his glove compartment, according to Texas officials.

Britain probing Snowden’s leak of classified material


Britain has launched a criminal investigation into Edward Snowden’s leak of classified material to the Guardian newspaper and is sifting through documents it seized from the partner of one of the paper’s journalists, a government lawyer said Thursday.

The revelation by lawyer Jonathan Laidlaw came at London’s High Court, where lawyers for David Miranda, the partner of Guardian journalist Glenn Greenwald, unsuccessfully sued to stop police from combing through digital material seized from him Sunday at Heathrow Airport.

It was the British government’s first mention of a criminal investigation linked to the seized material, which included a laptop, cellphone, DVDs and memory sticks.

Greenwald has been at the centre of the Guardian’s disclosures about the National Security Agency, which have pulled back the curtain on the American government’s secret domestic espionage programme.

Miranda, a 28-year-old Brazilian student, was detained for nearly nine hours as he flew through the London airport after meeting in Germany with a journalist working with Greenwald.

Laidlaw said British police had already begun scanning through Miranda’s tens of thousands of pages of documents, which he described as “highly sensitive.”

“The disclosure of (the material) would be gravely injurious to public safety and thus the police have now initiated a criminal investigation,” Laidlaw said. “There is an absolutely compelling reason to permit this investigation to continue.”

The exact target of the investigation was not clear.

counter-terrorism

The Guardian said it was unaware of any criminal investigation and had yet to hear from the police about the matter. London’s Metropolitan Police said in a statement that its counter- terrorism command had only just launched the inquiry Thursday.

It was not immediately clear what link a British investigation would have to American efforts to prosecute Snowden, who has won temporary asylum in Russia and is still being sought by Barack Obama’s government on charges of espionage.

The High Court yesterday largely ruled in favour of the government, saying officials could continue to sift through the seized data on national security grounds until a court hearing August 30 examines the government’s reasoning.

Judges Jack Beatson and Kenneth Parker did issue a partial injunction blocking the government from examining or sharing the data for any other purpose, something that would prevent the police, for example, from searching Miranda’s hard drive for evidence of more mundane wrongdoing.

Even if a future court hearing finds that Miranda was detained impro-perly or that his documents must be returned, the government would still have had the chance to peek at what is inside, something his lawyers had described as a blow to journalistic integrity.

“Confidentiality, once lost, can clearly never be restored,” attorney Gwendolen Morgan said in a statement before the hearing.

Greenwald had said earlier this week that Miranda’s documents were “protected by very advanced and heavy forms of encryption” software that scrambles data so it is unreadable by anyone without a digital key.

Laidlaw, the government attorney, didn’t explicitly contradict that, but his comment Thursday that police were already “partway through” the material suggested that British authorities had managed to read the files regardless.

Man stabs grandpa’s girlfriend


A St James man accused of stabbing his grandfather’s girlfriend in the neck was given $100,000 bail in the Montego Bay Resident Magistrate’s Court on Wednesday.

Renaldo Christie, 23, from Glendevon, is charged with unlawful wounding, committed against Brenda Smith. He is booked to return to court on September 18.

The court was told that on July 19, about 10:30 a.m., Smith was at home with Christie’s grandfather, with whom she is in a relationship, when Christie and another man entered the house armed with a ratchet knife and a machete. Christie, the court heard, stabbed Smith in the back of the neck, while the other man chopped her all over her body.

Smith was rushed to the hospital, and Christie was later arrested following investigations.

“Does the Crown have information as to a motive for the attack?” Resident Magistrate Vivienne Harris asked clerk of the court Orrett Brown.

“No, Your Honour, also, I understand that the medical will be ready in another three weeks,” Brown replied.

In making a bail application, Christie’s lawyer, Kenneth McLeod, said his client had no previous convictions and could relocate.

“He has never had any discussions with the complainant (Smith) before. He can live with his father in Norwood Gardens,” said McLeod.

Harris subsequently granted bail on condition that he report to the Montego Hills Police Station every Monday between 7 a.m. and 6 p.m.

“You are not to be seen in the Glendevon area, and you are not to go to your grandfather’s house at all, and have no contact with the complainant,” Harris warned Christie sternly before setting the mention date.