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Guyana to introduce witness protection law

Witnesses with valuable information in important court cases would soon be granted protection including change of their identities.

Minister of Governance, Raphael Trotman announced Thursday that the government would soon be tabling Witness Protection legislation in the House.

He said Guyana’s witness protection programme would see witnesses having access to safe houses and new identities wherever possible.

Trotman told reporters that the initiative, would see Guyana cooperating with Trinidad and Tobago, Jamaica, and Barbados since they already have such a program ongoing.

He related that these countries move witnesses from state to state, which is something that Guyana would be looking to capitalize on.

More to the issue, he revealed that the Government may be looking to draw down from grant funding recently made available from Britain for the initiative.

Aspects of the programme would see persons being given entirely new lives complete with new identities and possible physical changes.

If passed by the 65-seat House, the Witness Protection Law would be the latest in a series of laws to help authorities fight major crimes and convict perpetrators. The others are laws for plea bargaining and the interception of phone calls.