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Identifier
Created
Classification
Origin
06BRIDGETOWN304
2006-02-17 12:52:00
UNCLASSIFIED
Embassy Bridgetown
Cable title:  

2005 OSAC CRIME AND SAFETY REPORT (OCSR) FOR

Tags:   ASEC  CASC  KCRM  KSAC  BB  GJ  XL 
pdf how-to read a cable
VZCZCXRO1062
PP RUEHGR
DE RUEHWN #0304/01 0481252
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 171252Z FEB 06
FM AMEMBASSY BRIDGETOWN
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 1884
INFO RUEHGR/AMEMBASSY GRENADA 0120
RUEHLO/AMEMBASSY LONDON 0611
RUEHFR/AMEMBASSY PARIS 0345
						UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 08 BRIDGETOWN 000304 

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

FOR DS/DSS/OSAC
FOR DS/IP/WHA
FOR DS/DSS/ITA
FOR WHA/CAR
For CA/OCS/ACS/WHA

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: ASEC CASC KCRM KSAC BB GJ XL
SUBJECT: 2005 OSAC CRIME AND SAFETY REPORT (OCSR) FOR
BRIDGETOWN AND THE EASTERN CARIBBEAN




1. CHIEF OF MISSION (COM) responsibility extends to
seven (7) independent nations of the Eastern Caribbean
including:

-- Antigua and Barbuda
-- Barbados
-- Dominica
-- Grenada
-- St. Kitts and Nevis
-- St. Lucia
-- St. Vincent and the Grenadines

CONSUL GENERAL (CG), Bridgetown provides consular
services for the nations listed above as well as the
following ten (10) dependent territories:

-- British Virgin Islands (UK Territory)
-- Montserrat (UK Territory)
-- Anguilla (UK Territory)
-- Martinique (FR Territory)
-- Guadeloupe (FR Territory)
-- St. Martin (FR Territory)
-- St. Barthelemy (FR Territory)
-- St. Maarten (NE Territory) (Visa issues only)
-- Saba (NE Territory) (Visa issues only)
-- St. Eustatius (NE Territory) (Visa issues only)

NOTE: AmConsul Curacao has American Citizen Services
(ACS) oversight for the three Dutch Islands of St.
Maarten, Saba and St. Eustatius.

Various elements of the Mission (USAID, OFDA, LEGATT,
IRS, DEA, CONSULAR, RSO, ORA) have responsibilities
extending to other independent nations and dependent
territories of the broader Insular Caribbean.



2. OSAC CRIME AND SAFETY REPORT



I. OVERALL CRIME AND SAFETY SITUATION IN THE EASTERN
CARIBBEAN

American citizen (AmCit) tourists visiting anywhere in
the Eastern Caribbean are not targeted for crime to a
greater degree than other foreigners. American
citizens who reside in the Eastern Caribbean region and
live on local economies do not always enjoy the same
level of the police protection that regional
governments provide to tourists who frequent a more
narrow set of tourist areas. Tourism is a major
contributor to regional GNPs. Resident AmCits are
reporting non-confrontational property crimes in higher
numbers and there is a growing perception that violent
crime is on the increase.

Commonly (but not uniformly), resorts, hotels, and
other businesses that cater to American tourists
provide walled-in compounds with access controls,
private security staffs that conduct background checks
on resort employees, and hired drivers and safe
transportation for their guests. Also, local
governments tend to provide a higher level of uniformed
police presence in residential and business areas
frequented by tourists. Police stations and police
outposts are strategically located in those areas
(specifically in Barbados).

In comparison to large metropolitan police departments
in the United States, Eastern Caribbean police forces
lack vigor; they suffer from a lack of resources and
training; and are inconsistent in the level and quality

of services provided to the general public and tourism
sectors. This is not to suggest that Police
Commissioners and senior police administrators lack
education and experience, quite the contrary. It is,
however, accurate to say that almost all Eastern
Caribbean police forces are under- funded, under-
staffed, and ill equipped to meet the growing
challenges of the post-9/11 world.

Founded in 1987, the Association of Caribbean
Commissioners of Police (ACCP) promotes and facilitates
law enforcement within 24 Caribbean countries. The
ACCP promotes regional cooperation among 24 countries
to fight crime through:

BRIDGETOWN 00000304 002 OF 008



1) Collaboration and co-operation in the development
and implementation of policing strategies, systems and
procedures;

2) The professional and technical skills development of
police officer;

3) Proactive measures to prevent crime and improve
police community relations.

The ACCP has played a significant role in improving the
delivery of police and public safety services
throughout the Eastern Caribbean. However, there is
much work yet to do and there are problem areas. For
example, in December 2003, an improvised explosive
device (IED) was discovered on St. Vincent, secreted
within the engine compartment of a privately owned
vehicle. In Barbados, a serial bomber was arrested and
institutionalized after detonating four small IEDs.
Also, in 2005, a stick of dynamite was found in a
suspected drug dealer's residence in Barbados. In
February 2005, an IED enhanced with cement nails
detonated outside a privately owned business on Antigua
causing light structural damage but no physical
injuries. These types of IEDs are unusual for Eastern
Caribbean nations. The Royal Barbados Police Force is
one of the few departments trained to handle explosive
devices.

In the past two years, Grenada has experienced at least
four incidents of arson at public schools. No
perpetrators have been charged yet.

The following general characterization of crime and
public safety environments apply throughout the Eastern
Caribbean. Generally, criminal individuals or groups
are free to roam day or night with few restrictions;
burglars and thieves target residential and lower-end
hotel/resort areas for opportunistic crimes. Burglars
and thieves typically rely on stealth to meet their
objectives, but since 2002, reports reflect an
increasing use of knives and handguns in the commission
of crimes. Further, high-traffic business areas
commonly frequented by tourists are targeted for
opportunistic street crimes like purse snatching and
pocket picking. Perpetrators committing street crimes
in the public eye can become confrontational, but
mostly they avoid gratuitous violence, which draws
attention to them.

Generally, numbers of uniformed police are inadequate
to have a substantial influence on crime deterrence and
uniformed police response to alarms or emergency calls
is often too slow (15 minutes or longer) to disrupt
crimes in progress. Police performance and conduct
varies from poor to acceptable in professionalism and
training, and regional police organizations have
definite resource/manpower limitations that inhibit
their deterrence and response effectiveness.

II. POLITICAL VIOLENCE

The islands of the Eastern Caribbean have experienced
little political violence or revolution. The last
major incident in the Eastern Caribbean occurred in
1979 when a Marxist-Leninist regime took power in
Grenada. In 1983, after a period of political
violence, a U.S.-led regional intervention deposed the
Grenada regime and established a democratic government.

American citizens and American-owned businesses in the
Eastern Caribbean have not been the focus of terrorist
actions or political violence. Today, violent public
protests and demonstrations are non-existent. Peaceful
protests are only rarely directed at Americans or
American-owned businesses.

III. SPECIFIC CONCERNS

IMPROVISED EXPLOSIVE DEVICES


--------------------------


BARBADOS - In November 2005, a stick of dynamite was
discovered in a suspected drug dealer's residence in

BRIDGETOWN 00000304 003 OF 008


Barbados. In 2003, on Barbados a serial bomber was
arrested and institutionalized after detonating four
small IED's.

ANTIGUA - In February 2005, an IED enhanced with cement
nails detonated outside a privately owned business on
Antigua causing light structural damage but no physical
injuries.

ST. VINCENT - In December 2003, an improvised explosive
device (IED) was discovered on St. Vincent, secreted
within the engine compartment of a privately owned
vehicle. The car bomb did not detonate but was
recovered and its components, including a circuit
board, inspected by ATF.

HURRICANES


--------------------------


The Eastern Caribbean is susceptible to hurricanes with
the season lasting from June until November. Barbados
has not been hit with a significant hurricane since


1955. However, on September 7, 2004, Grenada suffered
catastrophic damage in the wake of Hurricane Ivan.
With total breakdown of transportation, communications
and services, and damage to 90% of structures,
widespread looting was only stopped after intervention
by security forces from neighboring islands. Grenada
also suffered significant damage from Hurricane Emily
in July 2005, but was able to maintain order. The
structures on most islands are not built to withstand
strong hurricanes. Regional and national efforts are
underway to strengthen emergency preparedness.

VOLCANOES


--------------------------


The Soufriere Hills Volcano on Montserrat began
erupting again on July 18, 1995. Nineteen persons who
had disobeyed police orders to avoid the affected area
were killed. The island's capital, Plymouth, and its
airport were destroyed, and two-thirds of the island's
population of 10,500 was forced to leave. In July
2003, significant activity caused disruptions
throughout the island and the volcano, but the volcano
has since calmed. Low-level activity continues and is
closely monitored by international scientific groups.
The eruption of a volcano in St. Vincent in 1979 caused
the dislocation of 10,000 people, but no deaths. Other
islands have volcanoes that could erupt at any time.
For example, there is an underwater volcano, "Kick'em
Jenny," located just off the coast of Grenada.

EARTHQUAKES


--------------------------


An earthquake struck Dominica on November 21, 2004, and
registered 6.0 on the Richter Scale. It was
accompanied by very heavy rainfall and repeated
aftershocks. The official estimate for necessary
repairs, rehabilitation and reconstruction work to
official buildings as a consequence of the 2004
earthquake and accompanying heavy rainfall was USD 19.1
million. Another earthquake shook Dominica and
surrounding islands on February 14, 2005. The tremor
measured 5.2 on the Richter Scale. The structures on
most islands are not built to withstand strong
earthquakes.

NARCOTERRORISM/NARCO VIOLENCE


--------------------------


While local drug trafficking groups do get involved in
shootings, this type of activity is localized and is
not usually directed against tourists. In 2005, two
rival drug gangs were observed attacking each other in
downtown Bridgetown, Barbados, in broad daylight. A
suspected gang member was injured when cut by a
machete. The police subsequently made arrests.
Further investigation revealed a connection of one of
the arrested gang member to a murder committed several
months prior.

ILLEGAL DRUGS


--------------------------


Many tourists report being harassed by individuals
attempting to sell illegal narcotics. Marijuana and
cocaine are readily available within the Eastern

BRIDGETOWN 00000304 004 OF 008


Caribbean. All Eastern Caribbean nations and
territories enforce laws prohibiting the purchase,
possession, transportation, sale, or use of illegal
substances. Regardless of nationality, violators will
be placed under arrest and held for trial if bail is
not paid. Convictions carry fines and/or jail time.
Any American citizen detained by police or other
security services should immediately contact the U.S.
Embassy's Consular Section in Bridgetown, Barbados 1-
246-436-4950(24/7) for assistance. Consular Officers
are not substitutes for legal counsel, but routinely
check on the well being of incarcerated AmCits and work
to ensure that AmCits are treated fairly in accordance
with local and international laws.

COUNTERFEIT CURRENCY


--------------------------


The detection of counterfeit currency is on the rise in
the Eastern Caribbean. Several cases of counterfeit
U.S. currency have been reported and are being
investigated by the Barbados police. In 2005, the
local media reported that many Barbados businesses were
refusing to accept $100 U.S. notes for fear of
receiving counterfeit currency.

IV. POLICE RESPONSE

Eastern Caribbean uniformed police forces lack the
necessary resources to provide a consistent and timely
police response. The level of professionalism and
quality of service can vary from island to island and
the level of protection is directly proportional to its
impact on the tourist trade. Areas frequented by
tourists command a more visible police presence than
other parts of the islands. Police response in these
areas is usually timely and efficient, but response
delays to the non-touristic, less populated, and rural
areas of the islands can be significant.

Any U.S. citizen detained by the police or who becomes
a victim of crime should contact the U.S. Consulate in
Bridgetown, Barbados immediately to seek assistance.
In Barbados, the U.S. Consulate is located near
downtown Bridgetown in the American Life Insurance
Company (ALICO) building in the Cheapside neighborhood:
1-246-431-0225.

POLICE INFORMATION


--------------------------



Antigua and Barbuda


--------------------------


Population - 80,039
Authorized Strength of Police - 696
Emergency Numbers - (268) 562-0098 OR 999
Police Headquarters - (268) 462-0360

Barbados


--------------------------


Population - 279,254
Authorized Strength of Police - 1329
Emergency Numbers - (246) 430-7100 OR 211
Police Headquarters - (246) 430-7105

Dominica


--------------------------


Population - 70,352
Authorized Strength of Police - 387
Emergency Numbers - (767) 448-2222 OR 999
Police Headquarters - (767) 448-2476

Grenada, Carriacou, and Petite Martinique


--------------------------


Population - 104,000
Authorized Strength of Police - 800
Emergency Numbers - (473) 440-3999 OR 911
Police Headquarters - (473) 435-2346/3499

St. Christopher (or St. Kitts) and Nevis


--------------------------


Population - 46,710
Authorized Strength of Police - 398
Emergency Numbers - (869) 465-2241 OR 911
Police Headquarters - (869) 465-2045

BRIDGETOWN 00000304 005 OF 008



St. Lucia


--------------------------


Population - 162,010
Authorized Strength of Police - 714
Emergency Numbers - (758) 452-2854 OR 999
Police Headquarters - (758) 452-2851

St. Vincent and the Grenadines


--------------------------


Population - 115,000
Authorized Strength of Police - 638
Emergency Numbers - (784) 457-1211, x215 OR 999
Police Headquarters - (784) 456-1102

For police information on the other Caribbean islands
in the region, please see local information or call the
embassy.



V. MEDICAL EMERGENCIES

ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA


--------------------------



Holberton Hospital on Antigua is a 168-bed facility.
It is an aging facility, but all emergency surgeries
are performed at this facility. The accident and
emergency and surgical units are adequately equipped to
handle major medical emergencies. Ambulance service
and response time is approximately 5-8 minutes.
Ambulance crews are Emergency Medical Technicians (EMT)
and are allowed to perform CPR. They are trained in
advanced life support techniques. There are 13
consultant doctors and 22 resident doctors, physicians
and surgeons. There is also a Cuban Medical contingent
of approximately 9 doctors employed on revolving 2-year
contracts. Antigua has constructed a new hospital, but
has had difficulty opening for business. This hospital
will have more beds and is expected to be a more
efficient and modern facility.

Telephone: (268) 462-0251/2/3/4/67

Adelin Medical Centre on Antigua is a private 18-bed
non-profit facility. There is no resident doctor, but
there are approximately 23 consultant specialists.
There are two operating theatres. This facility
handles moderate to severe surgery and gynecological
care. There is no ambulance service.

Telephone: (268) 462-0866.

Spring View Hospital on Barbuda has a full time
resident doctor and hosts visiting American doctors.
This facility handles minor to moderate surgeries.
Major medical emergencies are transferred to Antigua.

Telephone (268) 460-0409

Emergency Telephone Numbers


--------------------------


Fire: (268) 462-0044
Police: (268) 462-0125/999
Ambulance (268) 462-0251
All Emergencies: 999 or 911

BARBADOS


--------------------------



Queen Elizabeth Hospital (QEH) is a 600-bed facility.
The compliment of staff has increased and includes
trained paramedics. The emergency ambulance service in
Barbados is operated by the Queen Elizabeth Hospital
and can be called upon in the event of an emergency.
QEH ambulance crews co-operate with the Barbados
Defence Force (BDF) ambulance service in case of mass
casualty. There are 10 ambulances at the QEH and 2 at
the BDF. Ambulance crews are allowed to perform CPR,
advanced cardiac life support and administer IV's.
There is one decentralized ambulance dispatch point at
Arch Hall, St. Thomas, at the fire station.

QEH is the only major trauma facility in Barbados with
a 24-hour accident and emergency room. The hospital

BRIDGETOWN 00000304 006 OF 008


has on-staff physicians and surgeons of almost all
specialties. Be prepared for long waits in the
emergency room for minor emergencies; such cases are
dealt with in priority order based on severity.

Telephone: (246) 436-6450

Bayview Hospital is a modern, privately owned 30-bed
facility designed for less acute illnesses, minor
outpatient surgery, and obstetric and gynecological
care. The patient's private doctor performs surgery at
the facility. There are no resident doctors, but the
facility employs approximately 35 nurses.

Telephone:(246) 436-5446

Emergency Contact Numbers:


--------------------------


Fire: 311
Police: (246) 430-7100 or 211
Ambulance: 511

DOMINICA


--------------------------



Princess Margaret Hospital is the major trauma facility
in Dominica. There are approximately 15 house/resident
doctors and 12 specialists. Minor to major surgeries
are performed at the facility. Response accident and
emergency times vary depending upon the severity of the
case and the availability of personnel.

The Ambulance service is operated by the Fire
Department. There are approximately 6 ambulances and
the crews are advanced trained Emergency Medical
Technicians (EMT) and are allowed to perform CPR and
other minor life support functions. Ambulance response
time is relatively quick because the ambulance service
is decentralized at district polyclinics.

Telephone: (767) 448-2231/5720.

There is one private hospital in Dominica, the "Justin
Fadete Hospital," on the west coast.

Emergency Contact Numbers:


--------------------------


Fire, Police & Ambulance: (767) 448-2222/999
Crisis Hotline: 333

GRENADA


--------------------------



On September 7, 2004, Hurricane Ivan struck Grenada
causing widespread damage and over twenty deaths.
General Hospital is the major trauma facility in
Grenada; it is a 325-bed facility. There are 11 House
Officers (doctors) of all specialties (e.g.,:
Orthopedic, General Surgery, Obstetrics and
Gynecology), 19 consultants, 9 interns, and 3
registrars. Accidents and emergencies are dealt with
immediately. There are six ambulances and the response
time is approximately 6-10 minutes. Ambulance crews
are allowed to perform CPR and they liaise with the
accident and emergency physicians as to the management
of the patient while in transit.

There are five district hospitals. There is no private
hospital in Grenada.

Emergency Contact Numbers:


--------------------------


Hospital: (473) 440-2051
Fire: 911/440-2112
Police: (473) 440-3999/911

ST. KITTS


--------------------------



With 156 beds, Joseph N. France General Hospital on St.
Kitts is the major trauma facility. There are
physicians and specialized surgeons on staff.
Accidents and emergencies are dealt with immediately
and minor cases are seen in order of severity.

BRIDGETOWN 00000304 007 OF 008


Ambulance response time is approximately 4-6 minutes
within the capital city of Basseterre and approximately
12 minutes outside of town. Ambulance crew/Emergency
Medical Technicians (EMT) are allowed to perform CPR
and start IV lines.

Telephone: (869) 465-2551

Nevis


--------------------------



Alexandra Hospital in Nevis is the major medical
facility with 52 beds. Ambulance response time is
approximately 30 minutes. Ambulance crews are allowed
to perform IV, general stabilization, and advanced
first aid functions. Emergencies are dealt with
immediately. This hospital can facilitate minor to
moderate surgeries. Most surgeries are done on the
island with the exception of open-heart, major
orthopedics and brain surgery; these are referred to
Trinidad, Puerto Rico and Miami. There are 9 doctors
and three surgeons on staff.
There are no private hospitals, but there are 6
Community Health Centers.

Telephone: (869) 469-5473

Emergency Contact Numbers:


--------------------------


Fire: (869) 469-3444/333
Police: (869) 469/5391/911
Ambulance: 911
Air Ambulance: 465-2801

ST. LUCIA


--------------------------



Victoria Hospital is the main local trauma facility
operating on a 24-hour schedule. The hospital has a
staff of physicians and surgeons specializing in all
areas of medicine. The wait time in the accident and
emergency room is dependent on the medical condition as
patients are triaged in priority order. There are over
200 nurses on staff. There are no ambulances at the
hospital. The fire department provides the ambulance
service and the crews are allowed to perform CPR and
basic EMT functions. Ambulance response service in St.
Lucia is fast because the service is decentralized at
the fire stations in the various districts.

Telephone: (758) 452-2421

Tapion Hospital is a modern, privately owned 22-bed
facility. There are approximately 15 consultant
doctors; there are now 3 resident doctors. Minor,
intermediate and major surgery is performed. There is
no ambulance service at this facility.

Telephone: (758) 459-2000/01

Emergency Contact Numbers:


--------------------------


Fire/Ambulance: 911
Police: (758) 452-2854/999
The hospital and fire service can be contacted through
the local police.


ST. VINCENT AND THE GRENADINES


--------------------------



Kingstown General Hospital is the main trauma facility
in St. Vincent, operating on a 24-hour schedule.
Ambulance service in St. Vincent is quick and response
in the Emergency room is immediate. Ambulance crews
are allowed to perform CPR and basic life support
services. The facility has a staff of 24 physicians
and surgeons of almost all specialties.

Telephone: (784) 456-1185

There are no private hospitals.

Emergency Contact numbers:

BRIDGETOWN 00000304 008 OF 008




--------------------------


Fire: 911
Police: (784) 457-1211/911

For information on other hospitals in the region,
please see local information or call the U.S. Embassy
in Bridgetown, Barbados, Tel: (246) 436-4950.

VI. TIPS ON HOW TO AVOID BECOMING A VICTIM OF CRIME IN
THE EASTERN CARIBBEAN

In the Eastern Caribbean, foot travel outside of well-
established tourist areas is not recommended,
especially alone or at night. Be vigilant when using
public telephones or ATM machines, especially those
located near roadsides or in secluded areas. As in
many U.S. metropolitan areas, wearing expensive
jewelry, carrying expensive objects, or carrying large
amounts of cash should be avoided. While at the beach,
visitors should safeguard valuables. Although hotels
and resorts are generally safe, many visitors have
experienced the loss of unattended items. Hotel
burglaries both day and night are not uncommon and all
valuables should be locked in room safes when possible.
Keep doors and windows locked especially at night.
Most nighttime burglaries of occupied hotel rooms occur
while the victims are asleep. Suspects commonly enter
through open or unlocked doors or windows.

Another common concern is visitor harassment. Over-
zealous merchants will offer a variety of legal and
illegal items for sale, and visitors should use caution
in dealing with them. The harassment rarely turns
violent.

VII. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION

U.S. Embassy - Bridgetown, Barbados

Consular Section: 1-246-431-0225
Main Embassy switchboard (24/7): 1-246-436-4950
Foreign Commercial Service: 1-246-436-4950, x2240
Regional Security Officer: 1-246-436-4950, x2430

U.S. Embassy - St. George's, Grenada

1-473-444-1173

U.S. Consular Agent - Antigua

1-268-463-6531

U.S. Consular Agent - Martinique

1-596-596-75-67

U.S. Peace Corps - St. Lucia

1-758-484-1064

KRAMER