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Crime is not spiralling out of control, Bunting insists

Thursday, January 23, 2014 | 5:05 PM    

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KINGSTON, Jamaica -- National Security Minister Peter Bunting is insisting that despite the 2013 calendar year ending with a “disappointing increase of nine per cent” in crimes, “crime is not spiralling out of control” contrary to sentiments expressed elsewhere.

The 2013 calendar year ended with 1,197 murders versus the 1,099 recorded for 2012. For the first half of 2013 the figures were continuing the downward trend experienced since May 2010, however in the third quarter the number of murders spiked to almost four per day.

Speaking at Thursday's Post Cabinet Press Briefing at Jamaica House in St Andrew the National Security Minister said this increase was due to a number of factors including the release of certain gang leaders from incarceration, an increase in the number of murders during the course of robberies, and an increase in the drug and firearm trafficking trade.

However, Bunting noted that there were some positives as every other category of crime was down.

He also said since the start of Operation Resilience, a police initiative against gangs, in October last year there has been some measure of success and a drop in crime figures.

“So crime is not spiralling out of control. To prevent future spread we have been building capacity in the Jamaica Constabulary,” Bunting said, pointing to the addition of personnel and material resources.

Alicia Dunkley Willis

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