RSS Asset Recovery Unit Exceeding Targets

RSS Asset Recovery Unit Exceeding Targets

RSS Asset Recovery Unit Exceeding Targets

Regional Security System | Monday, November 2, 2020

From left to right: Head of the Regional Security System Asset Recovery Unit (RSS ARU), Grenville Williams; Executive Director of the RSS, Captain Errington Shurland; UK Development Director for the Caribbean, Stefan Kossoff; and British High Commissioner to Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean, Her Excellency Mrs Janet Douglas pose for a photo to to commemorate the enduring partnership between the UK and RSS. (Photo courtesy British High Commission)

Through the efforts of the Regional Security System’s Asset Recovery Unit (RSS ARU) some US $26.8 million of criminal assets have been identified and restrained, while approximately 120 money-laundering investigations are being undertaken.

This was brought to the fore during a plaque unveiling ceremony at the RSS’ Fusion Centre at Paragon, Christ Church, which was held to mark the transition of the RSS ARU from a UK-funded project to an integrated department of the RSS.

British High Commissioner to Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean, Her Excellency Janet Douglas, lauded the department for its work in ensuring that criminals are not allowed to keep the illicit gains of their criminal activities. She also noted that with the ARU’s achievements came the realisation that it was necessary for the RSS to assume responsibility for the ARU’s operations.

“I want to commend Captain Errington Shurland, Executive Director of the RSS, for his governance and stewardship over the ARU since its formation in December 2015. I must also commend his team for their hard work and personal commitment to the growth and sustainability of the ARU.

“The simple fact that the RSS Member States took on responsibility for the ARU, demonstrates its perceived value and importance to the region. We are proud of the contribution that the former UK Department for International Development (DFID) made towards this vital work on asset recovery across the Eastern Caribbean. We look forward to the continuation of a close partnership between the RSS and the UK under the new Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO),” the British High Commissioner maintained.

With reports showing that US $7.5 million has been forfeited by the courts and an additional US $4.5 million has been seized and is in the court process, the RSS ARU continues to exceed its performance targets and make its stamp on the fight against serious organized crime and corruption.

Through the years, the RSS ARU has worked to build capacity and capability within regional law enforcement agencies and Financial Intelligence Units (FIUs). It has provided mentoring on live cases; facilitated training for law enforcement and criminal justice practitioners in financial investigations and asset recovery; raised awareness of the magistracy and judiciary; regularly engaged with and provided advice to stakeholders; advocated for and aided in the implementation of standardised and updated Proceeds of Crime legislation across the seven RSS Member States.

RSS 

CARPHA and RSS Team Up to Deliver Supplies

CARPHA and RSS Team Up to Deliver Supplies

CARPHA and RSS Team Up to Deliver Supplies

Regional Security System | Tuesday, September 1, 2020

Director of CARPHA, Dr. Joy St. John handing over medical supplies to Senior Administrative Officer in the Ministry of Health and Wellness, Gillian Applewhaite, while Executive Director of the RSS, Captain (N) Errington Shurland and Officer Commanding (RSS Airwing), Major George Harris look on. (Photo courtesy Ministry of Health and Wellness)

The Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) and the Regional Security System (RSS) have teamed up to help Member States prevent and reduce the spread of COVID-19.

The organisations are working together to distribute 15,000 throat swab test kits and 30,000 medical face masks which were donated by the People’s Republic of China to CARPHA. The critical supplies and equipment are being delivered to nine CARPHA Member States by the RSS.

CARPHA and the RSS have a long-standing partnership and have previously collaborated on the response to public health emergencies such as hurricanes. More recently, the two regional organisations have worked together to transport samples for coronavirus to Member States since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Regional Security System 

Work Of Former CDEMA Head Lauded

Work Of Former CDEMA Head Lauded

Work Of Former CDEMA Head Lauded

Regional Security System | Monday, June 1, 2020

The RSS has had a “hearty and healthy relationship” with CDEMA, during the tenure of former CDEMA head, Ronald Jackson. (Photo: RSS)

The work of former Executive Director of the Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency (CDEMA), Ronald Jackson, recently came in for high praise from Executive Director of the Regional Security System (RSS), Captain (N) Errington Shurland.

Conveying sentiments on behalf of the RSS Council of Ministers, the Security Chiefs and the management and staff of the RSS Headquarters, Captain Shurland lauded Mr. Jackson for his “sterling contribution” to CDEMA and presented him with a plaque to express gratitude for his service. “Your passion, commitment and dedication to disaster risk management in the Caribbean for the past seven years has been nothing short of outstanding,” he affirmed

The RSS official boasted of the “hearty and healthy relationship” which the two institutions have enjoyed under Mr. Jackson’s tenure, and gave the assurance that the RSS would strive to maintain that bond.

Mr. Jackson was appointed Executive Director of CDEMA on April 3, 2013. He has provided sterling leadership of the regional coordination and responses to Dominica, St. Lucia and St. Vincent after the Christmas Trough in 2013; Tropical Storm Erika in Dominica in 2015; Hurricanes Irma and Maria in 2017; Hurricane Dorian in the Commonwealth of The Bahamas in 2019 and in the current COVID-19 Pandemic now affecting the region.

Regional Security System 

RSS 10th EDF Project – Newsletter

RSS 10th EDF Project – Newsletter

RSS 10th EDF Project - Newsletter

Regional Security System | Friday, April 30, 2020

The RSS 10th European Development Fund Project of activities sought to contribute to capacity-building and institutional response to illicit trafficking by strengthening capacities of law enforcement and other border security agencies to address illicit trafficking, and enhance existing rehabilitation initiatives in correctional facilities for inmates. The project also sought to build public support for law enforcement initiatives and promote public understanding of other social and criminal aspects which contribute to the criminogenic environment and remain part of the contemporary regional crime environment by hosting a series of panel discussions on key areas of national and regional security.

Below is the RSS Newsletter highlighting the various programmes and activities executed under the 10th EDF Project. 

St. Kitts And Nevis Passes Proceeds of Crime and Asset Recovery Bill, 2019

St. Kitts And Nevis Passes Proceeds of Crime and Asset Recovery Bill, 2019

St. Kitts And Nevis Passes Proceeds of Crime and Asset Recovery Bill, 2019

Regional Security System | Wednesday, February 5, 2020

Attorney General of St. Kitts & Nevis, Senator the Honourable Vincent Byron. (Photo courtesy SKN Vibes)

The Government of St. Kitts and Nevis has strengthened its legislative framework that targets the financing of illicit activities through the passage of the Proceeds of Crime and Asset Recovery Bill, 2019 in the National Assembly on Thursday, January 23.

Mover of the bill, Attorney General, Senator the Honourable Vincent Byron, noted that the main aim behind Proceeds of Crime and Asset Recovery Bill, 2019 is “to provide a robust and comprehensive system that would not just focus exclusively in taking criminals off the street but would critically provide a legal basis for identifying and removing the assets or proceeds of crime from the hands of the perpetrators of unlawful acts.”

The Proceeds of Crime and Asset Recovery Bill, 2019 bolsters the 20-year old Proceeds of Crime Act Cap. 4.28 which provides for the freezing, forfeiture, and confiscation of the proceeds of crime; to create new offences and procedures for the purpose of forestalling and preventing money laundering, and to enable the enforcement of overseas freezing, forfeiture, and confiscation orders; and to provide for related or incidental matters.

The Attorney General said, “It strengthens the Act that existed for the last 20 years that is being used by the prosecutors of criminals by going to the High Court to get orders to seize the proceeds of those who have been convicted for criminal activity. What [the Proceeds of Crime and Asset Recovery Bill, 2019] will do is introduce a new section that deals with the seizure or confiscation of assets through a civil process.”

The minister added that this new piece of legislation gives authorities an additional tool to investigate what he termed as “unexplained wealth,” noting that it “reinforces our fight against money laundering, it strengthens our fight against terrorist financing and other types of nefarious activities.”

AG Byron further stated that the Proceeds of Crime and Asset Recovery Bill is reflective of the work of the Asset Recovery Unit of the Barbados-based Regional Security System (RSS).

According to the official RSS website, the criminal assets recovery programme is an innovative approach to tackling serious organised crime in the Caribbean common law jurisdictions, through partnership and the robust application of proceeds of crime and money laundering legislation.

(Reposted from SKN Vibes)