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Caribbean: Saint Lucia Police report improved yacht security

By The Royal Saint Lucia Police Force — last modified Apr 09, 2014 12:22 PM
Action is being taken to strategically respond to and deter would be perpetrators along the Western coast of Saint Lucia. As reported by the RSLPF.

Published: 2014-04-08 23:00:00
Topics: Piracy & Security
Countries: St Lucia

As a major stakeholder of the tourism sector, the Royal St. Lucia Police Force (RSLPF) is well aware of the impact that attacks on yachts and yachters can have on the sustainability of the industry generally and in particular on the yachting sector.

The Soufriere police have confirmed that action is being taken by lawmen to strategically respond to and deter would be perpetrators along the Western coast. The Soufriere police says six incidents of the burglary of yachts were reported in 2013 and three thus far in 2014.

Acting Assistant Superintendent of Police Luke Jn. Pierre who heads the Soufriere Police Station says most of the incidents occur in the Hummingbird Beach area and to a lesser extent at Malgretoute, Soufriere.

He says the police are concerned and are actively responding; however the response mounted by the police must be appreciated in the right context.

“Some of our men are currently undertaking a Basic Seamanship course facilitated by the Marine Department of the RSLPF. The training will augment our ability to minimize this problem. The Soufriere Marine Management Area (SMMA) and the Soufriere Regional Development Foundation (SRDF) have agreed to partner with the police as stakeholders themselves, to battle the scourge of burglaries of yachts berthed on the West coast.”

Mr. Jn. Pierre says the two organizations have pledged a boat and fuel respectively. The police he says will provide the man power in an attempt to pool the resources needed to intensify patrolling.

“We are hoping to stamp out the problem. So far we have deployed officers to patrol the beach during the day and also at night. The Marine Unit is also patrolling these areas.”

The Head of the Soufriere Police Station also called for the cooperation of the business community in the areas mentioned, including establishments along Hummingbird Beach.

“Citizens need to do their fair share, particularly those with businesses on the beach. This is because there are several aspects to this problem and the police do not possess the resources to deal with every single one of them” Mr. Jn. Pierre explained. “This is also a social issue and there must be a multifaceted approach in order to make a dent.”

The senior police officer acknowledged that the yachting industry has grown in recent times, and unfortunately with this has come some negatives; which are being tackled very seriously. “The industry has grown. Yachts are now berthing in Laborie, unheard of a few years ago. Increases in yachting and water taxi activity will also bring its fair share of ills.”

The police confirmed that they have investigated the pattern of the attacks by perpetrators. What they are attempting to foster is a community approach that will cause a reduction of opportunity for thieves to strike.

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