Plot to kill Trinidad and Tobago PM uncovered

Plot to kill Trinidad and Tobago PM uncovered

She said the introduction of a state of emergency Aug 21 has forced criminal elements in Trinidad and Tobago to seek reprisals, reported

"I am advised by the law enforcement authorities that they have, through their intelligence resources, uncovered an assassination plot against members of my government and myself," Bissessar told the news conference here.

Police Commissioner Wayne Gibbs said at least a dozen people have  been detained for questioning in connection with the plot. Gibbs confirmed that among those detained were former members of the protective services here.

“I am going to be very brief in saying that with the information and intelligence we have received, we have put plans in place to counter what we know and we have worked again very hard to ensure the safety of everyone in Trinidad and Tobago,” he told reporters.

Bissessar said that while she intends to keep her public engagements, her main concerns were for the “safety and prosperity of the people of Trinidad and Tobago”.

"I am very grateful to...the law enforcement (officials) who have uncovered such a plot. As a result of their vigilance they have thwarted what was an evil devious act of treason against the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago. Their actions have proven the actions of the government are having the desired effect."

"We are flushing them out, we are making it almost impossible for them to operate as they would have done in the past. These nefarious elements with support from others whose names will come to light in time, are finally confronted by a government which possesses the political will, which possesses the courage, which possesses the strength of conviction to stoutly defend and protect the citizens of our country," the prime minister said.

She said she never expected that those who plotted against the security of the state to congratulate her administration for curtailing their ability to operate.

“However, I did anticipate their extreme displeasure. The state of emergency (is) a major impact on crime reduction,” Bissessar said, noting that since it was imposed in August 7,269 people have been  arrested, 463 for gang related activities.

The prime minister, flanked by her National Security Minister (retired Brigadier) John Sandy Gibbs, and Acting Chief of Defence Staff Brigadier Kenrick Maharaj, told reporters 13,183 rounds of ammunition and 173 firearms have been seized.

She said in addition drugs with an estimated street value of TT$1.5 billion ($250 million) have been seized and destroyed and that Monday there was the “largest single drug bust” with a street value of TT$55 million.

She said: “I am not surprised that such elements would make good on threats to carry out reprisals. After all we have disrupted their illegal business."