Three held in $264m. drug bust

KINGSTON — A Guardsman security company contractor is among three men arrested in a multimillion-dollar cocaine bust in St. James on Saturday night.

Sixty-six kilogrammes of cocaine, valued at approximately $264 million, was seized after police stopped and searched a marked Guardsman security vehicle on the Mount Carey main road in St. James. Two of the men were occupants of the company vehicle. A third man, who police sources said was travelling in a vehicle being used as a decoy, was also arrested when his vehicle was stopped by members of the constabulary.

The seizure, which took place 8:30 p.m., was a collaborative effort by members of the Major Organised Crime and Anti-Corruption task force, the Transnational Crime and Narcotics Division, and the Jamaica Defence Force, an official police report said.

“The men are in custody and charges are expected to be made against them, but, of course, they will have to be interviewed in the presence of their legal representatives,” said Inspector Dahlia Garrick, MOCA’s communication liaison officer.

Inspector Garrick said that Saturday’s operation was information-driven, and that it spoke to the MOCA’s commitment to remove profits from organised crime.

Guardsman Limited, which confirmed the incident, distanced itself from the arrested individuals and made it clear that the company was not under investigation regarding the drug seizure. The company, meanwhile, said it was cooperating with police investigators.

“We do not in any way stand for what is allegedly individuals conducting [an] unlawful activity. The individual (contractor) involved has been relieved of all duties, with immediate effect, until the investigation is completed,” said Major Richard Blackwood, general manager of Guardsman Limited, in a statement yesterday. (Gleaner)

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