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July 8, 2012

By Horace Hines—–

FLORENCE HALL, Trelawny — The sun beat down on the large group of ‘women’ being detained under a shed as policemen and soldiers milled about, keeping them under guard, Saturday.

Some stood in stocking feet, their high-heeled platform pumps in hand, their garish make-up melting, their lacefront wigs still firmly attached to their heads. The see-through lace minidresses, shorts and tights in which many of them were clad were enough, under normal circumstances, to elicit a second glance, but even moreso yesterday morning, for these were no ordinary females.

Police keep a close watch on a large group of detainees, including males in drag, who were held in a pre-dawn raid of a party in Discovery Bay, St Ann, on Saturday morning.

They were, in fact, crossdressing males who had been rounded up in a pre-dawn raid of a party that was in full swing at a night club in Discovery Bay, St Ann, on Saturday.

The cross-dressers, police said, comprised the majority of the group of about 130 partygoers taken into custody by members of the lotto scam task force during an intelligencedriven operation.

“This nightclub — which had 130 persons — in reality, there were not more than about 11 genuine females. We thought there were many females, but most of them are males dressed up as females,” noted head of the lotto scam task force, Superintendent Leon Clunis.

He was addressing members of the press shortly after the detainees and confiscated items were transported to the Trelawny police headquarters located on the premises of the Trelawny Multi-purposed Stadium.

The name of the club has been witheld by the police.

Fifteen vehicles, including a high-end Nissan Skyline, were also seized and a large quantity of drugs including ganja and ganja ‘spliffs’. Three laptop computers, video cameras and cellular phones were among other items confiscated during the operation.

Some of the detainees brazenly posed for reporters’ cameras.

The large number of males in drag, were of little consequence to the joint task force that carried out the raid, insisted Superintendent Clunis.

“While we have no interest in persons’ sexuality or sexual preferences… what we are saying is that as a task force we are dealing with crime and criminality in general, and we do not care who commit it”.

A male cross-dresser poses for the camera

One person, whose identity has been withheld, has since been charged for a portion of the large amount of ganja found at the club.

Meanwhile, two men who were wanted by the police were among those taken into custody.

According to Superintendent Clunis, one of them was facing a charge of stealing electricity and had absconded bail. The other, said to be of a Kingston address, was taken into custody on a warrant for housebreaking and larceny.

Meanwhile, Superintendent Clunis revealed that during another operation in Santa Cruz, St Elizabeth, by members of the joint task force and the St Elizabeth police, a man alleged to be a prominent player in the lotto scam was held after he collected over $250,000 from a money transfer service on Friday.

“We just want to thank the members that were with us this morning and members of the Santa Cruz police who assisted in making our jobs much easier,” said the police officer as he challenged Jamaicans to partner with the police to rid the nation of the lotto scam which is ruining the country’s reputation abroad.

“Jamaicans, please get on board in this fight, because we are here to ensure that the integrity of the country is restored,” Superintendent Clunis pleaded, adding that the lottery scam task force would not relent in its pursuit of those involved in the scam.



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