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Trinidad Security Minister on Choo Kong’s murder: Something not adding up


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Raymond Choo Kong

(TRINIDAD GUARDIAN) — The mur­der of award-win­ning play­wright, pro­duc­er and ac­tor Ray­mond Choo Kong does not add up.

This view was shared yes­ter­day by Na­tion­al Se­cu­ri­ty Min­is­ter Stu­art Young fol­low­ing the open­ing of the Barataria Com­mu­ni­ty Li­brary.

On Mon­day, Choo Kong’s was dis­cov­ered by one of his adopt­ed sons cov­ered in blood while seat­ed in a chair in the liv­ing room of his Green Street, Ari­ma, home.

Choo Kong, 69, was stabbed mul­ti­ple times to the up­per part of his body by his as­sailant. An au­top­sy yester­day re­vealed that he was stabbed eight times to the chest and had de­fen­sive wounds to the hands and fore­arms.

In­ves­ti­ga­tors be­lieved that Choo Kong was a vic­tim of a rob­bery, as his wal­let, a gold ring and cell­phone were stolen by his at­tack­er who made good his es­cape. They are al­so look­ing at oth­er pos­si­ble the­o­ries but have no clear mo­tive as yet.

Po­lice be­lieve that it may al­so be a crime of pas­sion and in­ves­ti­gat­ing of­fi­cers al­so re­ceived in­for­ma­tion that Choo Kong was a vic­tim of rob­bery one week ago and it was pos­si­ble that there was a link to that in­ci­dent.

The third the­o­ry is that Choo Kong was killed dur­ing a home in­va­sion gone awry, how­ev­er, po­lice said there wasn’t enough sup­port­ing ev­i­dence which sug­gests that it was a ran­dom rob­bery.

Pressed by Guardian Me­dia about Choo Kong’s mur­der, Young de­scribed it as a tragedy.

“With Mr Choo Kong I am still wait­ing on a re­port….cer­tain­ly the in­for­ma­tion that has been com­ing to me, I mean, some of us we didn’t sleep last night. We just kept ex­chang­ing…I was there mes­sag­ing the heads of se­cu­ri­ty as to ideas and ini­tia­tives…how are they pro­gress­ing with their in­ves­ti­ga­tion in­to this par­tic­u­lar trag­ic death.”

Young said one of the things that struck him there was no forced en­try in­to Choo Kong’s home.

“Al­so where we found the body.”

He said the vast ma­jor­i­ty of crim­i­nals use il­le­gal firearms to rob peo­ple as op­posed to knives.

“This was a stab­bing death…so these are the things that do not add up and don’t seem to sug­gest that it is a nor­mal rob­bery type sit­u­a­tion.”

He said once the po­lice con­clude their in­ves­ti­ga­tion, more will be re­vealed.

Young ex­tend­ed con­do­lences to Choo Kong’s griev­ing fam­i­ly and friends, stat­ing that he had at­tend­ed many of his plays which he en­joyed.

“He was a fab­u­lous artiste. Al­so, he touched many lives.”

Young said it was up­set­ting to hear the num­ber of mur­ders that had oc­curred from Sun­day in­to Mon­day which were all “un­con­nect­ed” with il­le­gal firearms be­ing the weapon of choice by crim­i­nals.

He said the spike of nine mur­ders in less than 24 hours was “un­ac­cept­able” as it has now be­come to norm for crim­i­nals to be­have bold and brazen.

“I am just say­ing to be cau­tious. I am not say­ing that we don’t have is­sues with crime. Un­for­tu­nate­ly, so­ci­eties around the world have de­te­ri­o­rat­ed when it comes to crime over the past decade. We know what the is­sue is here. It is il­le­gal firearms. There is a lot more preva­lence of il­le­gal firearms that is why we are tack­ling it.”

He ap­pealed to cit­i­zens to put pres­sure on “politi­cians” to get sup­port for the amend­ments in the Firearms Bill, which would serve as a de­ter­rent to gun-tot­ing crim­i­nals who can face life in prison on their third gun of­fence.

“That is go­ing to make peo­ple stop in their tracks.”

Ques­tioned if the TTPS’ re­cent crime-fight­ing ini­tia­tive should fail what would be the Gov­ern­ment’s next step, Young said when “pres­sure is ap­plied” on the crim­i­nal el­e­ments “you see the drop…and you see the de­crease. As soon as that eas­es up you have these spo­radic spurts. So what I have asked is that we find a way to main­tain it…sus­tain­abil­i­ty. And we have cer­tain things in place.”

Soon, Young said there would be changes in the TTPS to bet­ter utilise its re­sources which would bring ad­di­tion­al re­sult.

A sug­ges­tion to im­pose a state of emer­gency in hot spot ar­eas, Young said this was not an op­tion.

“The Gov­ern­ment is not look­ing at a state of emer­gency. It is al­so a fal­la­cy that you can call a lim­it­ed state of emer­gen­cies in cer­tain ar­eas. You call a state of emer­gency is coun­try-wide and then you can put ap­pro­pri­ate re­sources…ab­solute­ly not.”

Young gave the as­sur­ance that his min­istry and the TTPS will go all out to bring the crime wave down.

This article was posted in its entirety as received by This media house does not correct any spelling or grammatical error within press releases and commentaries. The views expressed therein are not necessarily those of, its sponsors or advertisers.

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