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Dan Rather visits Jamaica for lottery scam documentary
American journalist and former CBS 60 Minutes anchor, Dan Rather was in Montego Bay, St James, this week to film a documentary on the infamous lottery scam. The programme is slated to be aired on US cable channel AXS TV in March.
Rather, who is now managing editor and anchor of the television news magazine, Dan Rather Reports, arrived in the island on Monday. He was scheduled to depart yesterday afternoon, leaving his camera crew behind to complete filming.
On his Web site, Rather announced he was filming in Jamaica: “I’m in Jamaica on a reporting trip. I’ve been here several times before, but it’s the first time in a while. Makes me think back to a report I did a while ago on “Rastafarians” for 60 Minutes. That old story somehow has become fairly popular on the Internet I’m told.”
The National Security Minister Peter Bunting says the reason for Rather’s visit this time is cause for concern.
“He and his 16-member camera crew did not come here and ask to see some of the nice resort areas, such as Doctor’s Cave Beach, etcetera, they wanted to see some of the areas where the scamming goes on, and the truth is, we can’t stop them from coming,” Bunting told members of the St James Police Civic Committee during a meeting Thursday evening.
Not totally disheartened by the effects the documentary could have on the country, Bunting said during his interview with Rather, he tried to present a balance that not all Jamaicans are con artists. “The police and the Government are not equivocating about this issue, but we are doing everything possible to eliminate the scourge,” Bunting said he told Rather.
According to Bunting, estimates revealed in 2012, between 40 and 50 per cent of violent crimes in St James were connected in one way or another to lottery scamming.
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