Statement On The Publication Of The Review Of Law Enforcement And Criminal Justice Bodies In The BVI

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(PLTM) - Office of the Governor - Press Statement On The Publication Of The Review Of Law Enforcement And Criminal Justice Bodies In The BVI

An expert review of law enforcement arrangements in the BVI has been published today. Completed as part of the Governor’s Commission of Inquiry commitments, the review looked at the structures, resources, conduct and standards of all agencies.

The review carried out by His Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire & Rescue Services (HMICFRS) identifies significant areas for improvement which have already started to be taken forward. There are 138 recommendations relating to the Royal Virgin Islands Police Force (RVIPF), His Majesty’s Customs, Immigration Department and the Prison Service, and in so far as they relate to law enforcement, the Attorney General’s Chambers, Director of Public Prosecution’s Office, Financial Investigation Authority and the Courts (both Magistrates and High Courts).

The report makes clear that the findings are not the responsibility of a few individuals but instead are a result of a number of factors over time.

The Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office has recruited an implementation manager to oversee the reforms. They arrived last month and work has already begun with the agencies to implement the recommendations.

Governor Daniel Pruce said, “As I said when I was sworn in as Governor, the security of the Virgin Islands is my top priority. So I want to thank all those who have been involved in producing this comprehensive and thorough assessment of the full breadth of our law enforcement capability, covering agencies under my responsibility and those that fall under the elected Government. This is an important opportunity for us all to improve and address the recommendations.

I would particularly like to commend the work of officers across many agencies who have already acted on recommendations assigned to them. I pay tribute to their collective determination to complete this work.

I am committed to working with all parties and the wider community to deliver a comprehensive and effective response to this review. We must focus on building law enforcement capabilities, so that those who live here feel more secure and that everyone has confidence in the law enforcement agencies."

Premier Natalio Wheatley said, “This is a serious undertaking for the betterment of the safety and security of all within the Virgin Islands. It is only by working as one team alongside the Governor’s Office and the law enforcement agencies that we will be able to grasp this opportunity to put in place the reforms that will allow us to transform arrangements for law enforcement and criminal justice.”

His Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire & Rescue Services (HMICFRS) will publish an additional report setting out a longer term strategic plan later this year.

Regular updates on the implementation of the recommendations will be reported back to the National Security Council and shared with the public to ensure transparency in the transformation process.

https://bvi.gov.vg/sites/default/files/british-virgin-islands-review-law-enforcement-and-criminal-justice-bodies._to_be_published._1.pdf

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