Abka Fitz-Henley reports.


A high-level investigation is underway into an incident in which a Jamaica Defence Force, JDF, vehicle was intercepted with 1,500 pounds of compressed ganja.

Two soldiers remain in custody this afternoon in connection with the seizure last night.

The seizure triggered a gunfight between the soldiers and the Police.

The incident which took place in Gutters St. Elizabeth is sending shock waves through sections of the security forces and the country.

Reports are that over the past few weeks, the narcotics Police intelligence agencies in collaboration with the JDF planned an operation which sought to intercept the soldiers who it’s believed were involved in the criminal underworld.

At approximately 9:30 last night, a Police team was dispatched and attempted to stop the JDF bus in which the two soldiers were travelling.

The men from the army allegedly disobeyed the directive to pull over and opened fire on the Police.

The Police returned the fire and pursued the JDF vehicle.

During the chase, the two soldiers allegedly attempted to toss some of the contraband from the  vehicle which was moving at high speed.

At the end of the chase, the soldiers, who were wearing their army uniform, were detained and 1-thousand-5-hundred-pounds of ganja seized.

The back glass window of the JDF vehicle was shattered by bullets during the gunfight.

Head of the JCF’s Corporate Communications Unit, CCU, Senior Superintendent of Police, SSP, Stephanie Lindsay spoke this afternoon with our news centre about the dramatic incident.

SSP Lindsay confirmed that two guns were confiscated from the soldiers who were taken into custody.

The incident today intensified talk about whether criminality is widespread within the security forces.

SSP Lindsay says it’s important to note that the leadership of the security forces have sent a clear signal that any criminality which may exist among its members will be addressed swiftly and with impartially.