Plot to kill head of Jamaica lottery taskforce uncovered
KINGSTON, Jamaica, Friday July 27, 2012 – The life of Superintendent Leon Clunis may well be in real and present danger. As head of the taskforce charged with the responsibility of combating the notorious multimillion dollar Jamaica lottery scam, he appears to have become one of the country’s most wanted men – by all the wrong people.
Police in Jamaica say they have “reliable information” that people involved in the international telemarketing fraud are plotting to murder the Lottery Scam Force chief.
The Jamaica Constabulary Force’s intelligence arm said it has reliable information of the plot as a result of a threat assessment conducted by the National Intelligence Bureau (NIB) which was sent to deputy commissioner Glenmore Hinds on Monday.
Media reports quoted from the NIB indicating that Superintendent Clunis is yet to be killed only because he is not widely known.
“However, the NIB said it has already seen activities which suggest that the threat forces are trying to establish his identity and routine. It pointed out that these activities are usually carried out to identify the vulnerabilities of the target and opportunities for attack,” The Jamaica Gleaner newspaper reported.
It further stated that Superintendent Clunis revealed that threats have also been made against other members of the taskforce, but he says steps have been taken to ensure their safety.
Meanwhile, the Jamaica Observer newspaper quoted government sources as saying that a “credible threat” exists against Superintendent Clunis.
“The information we have is that lottery scammers in Montego Bay are trying to get a fix on his identity and to study his movements,” said the source, who spoke on condition of anonymity.
“That kind of behaviour usually precedes attacks on people’s lives,” the source added.
Since its inception in April, the lottery scam taskforce has disrupted the activities of several persons involved in the fraud which has conned unsuspecting Americans out of billions of dollars.
The profits from the scam are then used to finance lavish lifestyles, including the purchase of expensive homes and luxury vehicles. The taskforce has gone after these assets and has already seized over US$162,000 and 90 motor vehicles.
The main opposition Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) has called on Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller to demand the resignation of two local government officials, including the deputy Mayor of Montego Bay, Michael Troupe, following their arrest in the multimillion dollar lottery scam.
National Security Minister Peter Bunting, who is also the general secretary of the ruling People’s National Party (PNP) has stated that the party would not shield anyone involved in illegal activities.