Top officials from the St. Kitts Police High Command, The Ministry of National Security and The Ministry of Tourism & International Transport have revealed the latest developments in the ongoing investigation into the incident which took place on island on Sunday, November 14th involving a tour bus carrying guests from a cruise ship.
At a press conference earlier this afternoon, the officials announced that four individuals had been arrested in relation to the incident and that a number of items were taken into police custody. A special investigative task force has been put in place to investigate the incident and increased tactical patrols and uniformed police presence has been established in the tourism-concentrated areas and other key local venues. Further, a comprehensive plan is being put together to help prevent instances of this sort from taking place in the future.
“We hope never to see this type of incident again in our Federation and look forward to working with the police to reinforce strategies and procedures designed to prevent any further occurrences of this nature,” said Senator Ricky Skerritt, Minister of Tourism & International Transport. “While the act was reprehensible, our police, Ministry of National Security and especially the people of St. Kitts & Nevis should be commended for their swift and decisive response to this affront to our nation’s economic security and reputation as a safe and welcoming tourism destination.”
According to Acting Commissioner of Police Stafford Liburd, concerned residents of St. Kitts rose to the occasion after realizing the damage this kind of incident could do to the country’s image and economy and it was the assistance of the local people which was the major factor in the success to date of this investigation. The local outrage as well as the potential impact of the matter on the important cruise industry led local people to flood the police with calls and leads in the first 36 hours following the incident. The information they provided ultimately led to the arrest Tuesday morning of the four persons in connection with the incident. “I was getting so many calls on my cell phone that I had charge my phone several times today,” said Liburd. “We had overwhelming public support on this and it shows the influence of tourism.”
Minister of National Security, Sam Condor, also reported receiving an impressive number of calls from the local community with information on the case following his national media broadcast Monday evening in which he appealed for urgent public support to the Police efforts.
The investigation continues to be handled with the utmost urgency by all official organizations involved and no additional cancellations of port calls are anticipated at this time. No one was injured in the tour bus robbery incident, which was unprecedented in St. Kitts. Several hundred thousand passengers disembarked in St. Kitts & Nevis safely to enjoy the Federation’s many attractions during the last cruise season.