Georgetown, Guyana – (September 29, 2016) President David Granger, today, urged members of the local law enforcement community to work with their counterparts in neighbouring countries and to use every possible legitimate avenue to locate and transport convicted drug lord, Mr. Barry Dataram back to Guyana.

In an invited comment, President Granger said that while he will not lay blame at the feet of any agency or individual, Dataram’s flight from Guyana, was something, which could have been avoided.

“Mr. Dataram is a person of interest. He is a well-known character in Guyana and I would expect that even though the judicial branch is separate, there should be a greater level of alertness on the part of the Magistracy, in the Judiciary, in matters like this and I don’t regard it as a failing on the part of law enforcement agencies but it is definitely an error which ought to have been avoided. The danger posed in having somebody who is now a convict out there, out of the jurisdiction is going to be harmful to our national interest so I would urge the law enforcement agencies to alert their counterparts in neighbouring states. Even though Mr. Dataram might have a foreign passport, it might be a forged passport. I would urge all law enforcement agencies to use every legitimate measure to bring him back into this jurisdiction so that he can serve his sentence,” the President said in an invited comment.

In the recording of the Ministry of the Presidency’s weekly television programme, The Public Interest, earlier today, President Granger told journalists that information suggests that Mr. Dataram is not a Guyanese and might have absconded using a passport not issued by the government of Guyana. The President assured though that the Police Commissioner has been asked to make every effort to locate the suspect.

“…so my information is that he is not travelling on a Guyanese passport. So after his disappearance, and we weren’t aware of his disappearance, we continued to work with our partners in the Caribbean to bring him to justice. If he is in Suriname as is suspected, the Commissioner of Police has been instructed to try to ascertain his whereabouts in neighbouring countries but he is not using a Guyana passport that much we know,” the Head of State said.

The President observed that while more could have been done, it must be noted that the resources currently available to law enforcement agencies are not sufficient to patrol every kilometer of the country’s borders and ports. However, Government, cognizant of the need for additional resources, has begun to acquire the equipment necessary to aid the fight against narco- trafficking and other forms of illegal activity.

“It is physically impossible to control every kilometer with our present resources. We are working on the acquisition of surveillance aircraft we are placing mounted police in wide open areas, we are acquiring ATVs and surveillance equipment,” he said.

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