CASTRIES, St Lucia, Wednesday September 13, 2017 – St Lucia Prime Minister Allen Chastanet says his government has agreed to house prisoners from the Turks and Caicos Islands, which was among the British Overseas Territories devastated by Hurricane Irma last week.
But he assured that local security officials as well as the British Government would ensure that prisoners would be safely transferred and would not pose a risk to the island’s population.
The British Virgin Islands and the Turks and Caicos Islands are facing dire circumstances with securing prisoners following the destruction of some prisons by Hurricane Irma and it is believed that over 100 criminals are on the loose in those countries.
“So the Government of St Lucia has agreed, at the request of the British Government, to take in three prisoners that will be coming in from Turks and Caicos,” Prime Minister Chastanet announced in the House of Assembly yesterday.
“I have consulted with the Commissioner of Police and the Minister for Security, as well as with the staff of Bordelais [Correctional Facility]. The initial inventory is that if needs be on a temporary basis we have the capacity to house 50 prisoners. In this instance, we are only bringing in three prisoners at the first request.”
“Let me take the opportunity to assure all Saint Lucians that your security is not being put at risk. But I think this is the humane thing for us to have done at a time when our brothers and sisters and our friends and family need us the most. It is the most important time for us to stand up and be counted,” he added.
Chastanet said that in making the decision to accept the prisoners, he considered what would have happened if St Lucia was in similar dire need, noting that in times of disaster, the island had received immense relief and support from the British and the French.