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Two held with crocus bag of spent shells

Friday, June 20, 2014
A member of the Northern Division Task Force sifts through thousands of spent shells seized during a police exercise on Wednesday night.

Two scrap-iron scavengers are now in police custody after being arrested with thousands of rounds of spent ammunition shells on Wednesday evening. The two men, ages 27 and 37, of Petit Bourg, San Juan, and Seventh Avenue, Malick, Barataria, were arrested around 7 pm by officers of the Northern Division Task Force led by Insp Mark Maharaj. According to reports, police were on patrol on Orange Grove Road, St Augustine, and noticed the two men, driving in a white pick-up truck behaving suspiciously. Police followed their vehicle and eventually stopped it near a bar on Dookiesingh Street. The two suspects were arrested after police found a crocus bag filled with the spent ammunition in the front seat of the vehicle. 


Police said the ammunition was of various calibres and included rounds used in handguns, shotguns and in high-powered assault rifles. Investigators noted that while the shell casings were virtually useless, they were still classified as ammunition under the Firearms Act and as such attracted a similar charge to live rounds of ammunition. Police said while being questioned, both men admitted they were on their way to a scrap-iron dealer in Spring Village, Valsayn, where they were planning to sell the spent shells. They were being interrogated up to late yesterday by detectives of the St Joseph Police Station who were trying to ascertain the source of the shells. Police believe, because of the large quantity and the type of ammunition recovered, the men most likely obtained their stash from a law enforcement officer with access to shooting ranges used by the police or Defence Force. 

The duo will spend the rest of the Labour Day/Corpus Christi long weekend in police custody and will appear in the Tunapuna Magistrates Court on Monday to answer charges of ammunition possession. Sgt Harrilal, PCs Gooding, Griffith, Persad and Abraham were involved in the exercise and are continuing investigations. 


Teacher held for sexual assault on student
A 44-year-old secondary school teacher from south Trinidad will appear before a Rio Claro Magistrate on Monday after being charged with molesting a male pupil. The teacher was arrested on Wednesday afternoon after the 16-year-old student at the Rio Claro East Secondary School reported the incident to police when school was dismissed. According to the student’s report, he was waiting at the side of the road when the teacher passed by in his car and offered him a lift. He got into the car and told police when they were driving along the Tabaquite Road towards Rio Claro the teacher began making sexual advances towards him. 

The student said he began to protest when the teacher put his hand on his leg and then touched his penis. After he objected the teacher desisted for the rest of the trip, however, when they arrived at the school the teacher resumed with his sexual propositioning and again touched his penis. When he got out of the car, the student reported the incident to the school’s principal and later at the Rio Claro Police Station. The teacher was arrested and was slapped with two charges of indecent assault. Eastern Division Police led by Snr Supt Saisnarine Mahabir were expected to interview other male students, who the student said interacted regularly with the teacher, as they believe Wednesday’s incident was not an isolated event. Investigations are continuing.


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