British MPs to meet minister over Barbados rapes concerns

LONDON, England, Friday March 8, 2013 – The persistence of two British women who were raped in Barbados within days of each other in 2010 appears to be edging closer to payoff.

Dr Rachel Turner of Hertfordshire, who holds a research post at the University of the West Indies (UWI), and Diane Davies of Anglesey, Wales, waived their right to anonymity to clear the name of 47-year-old Barbadian Derick Crawford who was charged with the rapes.

Dr Turner, 30, and Mrs Davies, 63, have called for an inquiry into their treatment by Barbados police and why the police kept insisting on Mr Crawford’s guilt long after they told them he was not the attacker, and when there was no forensic evidence linking Crawford to the crimes.

Now, two British MPs are meeting the minister with responsibility for the Caribbean to seek further clarification.

Stevenage MP Stephen McPartland and MP for Ynys Mon, Albert Owen, are meeting minister Mark Simmonds, according to a British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) report.

McPartland said: “We just want to be reassured by the minister that Barbados is a safe place, which does not seem to be the case at the moment.

“I am worried [about] what happened to my constituent and what could happen to British tourists there.”

Mr Owen said he hoped to establish the facts of the case so constituents’ concerns could be addressed.

Meanwhile, Mrs Davies said she hoped the meeting between the MPs and the minister would encourage the government “to make Barbados aware they cannot treat British tourists the way they do. If someone is attacked or is a victim of crime they need to be treated respectfully”.

She added that she hoped the British government could “persuade the Barbados police to re-open the investigation and find the man who attacked me and Rachel”. (Source: BBC) Click here to receive free news bulletins via email from Caribbean360. (View sample)