A total of 316,374 interceptions of speech and data were done in 2021 under the Interception of Communications Act to investigate various criminal issues in T&T.
The information was given in the 2021 report concerning the use of the Interception of Communication Act.
Of the total number of interceptions, 270,674 pertained to speech and 47,700 to data.
The report was laid in the Senate on Tuesday, along with reports from 2018 to 2020.
The total interceptions done in each of those years were: 798,884 (2018), 437,746 (2019) and 258,237 (2020).
The majority of interceptions in each of those years were also for speech, as opposed to data.
Due to the pandemic, there were restrictions since 2020 and a State of Emergency in 2021, reducing public movement. The State of Emergency ended last November.
The 2021 report stated that the Strategic Services Agency (SSA) applied for 83 warrants for interception as a result of their activity. Warrants were for 90 days and the court neither refused nor revoked any.
Offences at focus included murder, conspiracy to commit this, ammunition selling/transferring, corruption, anti-gang issues and intelligence on issues concerning terrorism—from recruitment and financing to supporting such acts and training for this. The report also listed quantities of drugs detected, arms components, currency and arrests on intelligence and evidence.