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Commissioner of Police challenges officers to show integrity in face of ‘cartel cops’

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Posted: Monday, November 29, 2021. 7:35 pm CST.

By Aaron Humes: The Police Department is no stranger to controversy and scandal – but the specter of police officers choosing to go into business for themselves and join the payroll of the drug cartels is especially worrisome.

Commissioner of Police Chester Williams today issued his strongest broadside yet against those in his very Department who have turned tail, insisting that he will not take up for them.

“What I can assure you is once they manifest themselves, we are going to cut their necks – I’m not gonna waste no time,” he boldly stated in a police briefing this morning in Belmopan. “So the thing is, those police officers who are involved and are still doing it – please, stop! Because if you are caught – I don’t know if working for the cartels and collecting a little money, [is] worth more than your integrity, worth more than your life, worth more than the life of your loved ones.”

But for those who are willing to take that risk, said Williams, they “have no space in the Police Department – they must go.”

It is frustrating to see that those who are supposed to be working with the Department appear to be working against the Department, but being caught red-handed and even the slightest circumstantial evidence will ensure you will be left to the courts to decide your fate. The Department will gather the evidence and ensure that the charges are proven, regardless of the resulting scandal to the Department and to the nation, Williams stated.

The Commissioner says he does not believe that the numbers of these persons are high, and slowly but surely, they are being weeded out as in the case of the four officers at Bladen and the Corporal at Pine Ridge. The department is working on the problem and must be commended for initiating both criminal and internal disciplinary procedures against those accused and it is zero tolerance if convicted.

As for their potential influence, the Commissioner said he is counting on the integrity of the Department on a whole not to be influenced, knowing the dangers that lie in doing so.

“For me, my integrity is not for sale, and I would want that every police officer sees themselves as that,” he said, mentioning strong values personally and even encouraging honest officers to turn in their corrupt fellows if the bait is dangled in front of them.

Ultimately, the Department cannot run from the truth – these activities do occur, and officers are involved, and as long as the lure is in place it will continue. But the Department will do its best to run these officers to ground and apprehend them, convict them, and get rid of them, the Commissioner affirmed.

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