Warner cleared in Flying Squad controversy

Former National Security Minister Jack Warner.
AP Photo/Shirley Bahadur,File

A police investigation into an alleged establishment of a “Flying Squad” two years ago has cleared former Trinidad and Tobago National Security Minister Jack Warner.

The Police Complaints Authority (PCA), which was also involved in the investigation, has found no wrong doing with regards to Warner and MP Harry Partap (who was at the time Junior Minister in the Ministry of National Security).

However, former police Inspector Mervyn Cordner, who triggered the investigation by alleging that Warner was behind the revamping the defunct “Flying Squad” may face a charge of fraud related offences under the Larceny Act Chapter 11.2, according to the police report.

The police have referred the conduct of Cordner with regards to his role into a proposed “Flying Squad” to the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Roger Henderson to determine whether any criminal charges can be laid against the former police officer.

The police in its 37-page report to the DPP on Dec. 23, 2013, said Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar requested an investigation into the alleged establishment of a New Flying Squad (NFS), which started on March 6, 2013.

The police during the course of the investigation interviewed a total of 140 persons and of this number 111 provided statements or reports.

According to the report, the police interviewed Cordner, who said that sometime in June 2012, he became aware via the media that the then National Security Minister, Jack Warner was interested in revamping a “Flying Squad” similar to what existed previously in the Trinidad and Tobago Police Service (under the late Randolph Burroughs).

The report said Cordner was of the opinion that Warner and ministry officials had sanctioned the formation of an intelligence gathering body and that is was a matter of time before they, as a unit, were formally legitimized.

Warner had advised Cordner in October, 2012 that the acting COP was not in favor of the establishment of the Unit and his unwillingness to enlist members of the Unit as SRP’s and as such the services he was offering were no longer needed.

More from Around NYC