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Join date : 2011-01-27

PostSubject: PNM SPY GAMES   PNM SPY GAMES I_icon_minitimeFri May 24, 2013 1:13 pm

Spy list reveals: Pres' phone tapped
Posted: Saturday, November 13, 2010

Clear and present danger
PRESIDENT George Maxwell Richards, former Chief Justice Satnarine Sharma, his wife Kalawati, Government and Opposition politicians, trade-unionists, journalists and even some of their children were subject to secret surveillance by the Security Intelligence Agency (SIA), Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar revealed yesterday as she expressed a "deep sense of personal outrage" over the SIA's use of illegal wiretapping.,130735.html

Spy list reveals: Pres' phone tapped
The telephones of President George Maxwell Richards, former police commissioner James Philbert, PNM MP Keith Rowley, businessman Gary Aboud and comedian Rachael Price were among those tapped by the Security Intelligence Agency (SIA) under the previous administration, Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar has claimed.

Macco Manning
The most damning, explosive, "troublesome and vexing" of the revelations made by Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar in the Parliament yesterday, was that the nation's Head of State, its first citizen, President George Maxwell Richards' phone was among those persons whose phones were being tapped and e-mails intercepted by the Strategic Intelligence Agency (SIA), the "secret intelligence agency", since 2005.

Sit down!
MINUTES after Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar made the embarrassing disclosure that the State, under the PNM, had for years spied on citizens, Speaker Wade Mark was forced to order San Fernando East MP Patrick Manning to take his seat after Manning several times made moves to respond to Persad-Bissessar's statement in breach of the Standing Orders.,130736.html

Speaker blanks Manning in House
House Speaker Wade Mark yesterday firmly refused to allow former prime minister Patrick Manning's repeated appeals to make a request in Parliament following a statement by Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar. In a tense stand-off between the two, Mark threatened to ask Manning to leave the Parliament Chamber if he did not take his seat.

Manning: I didn't know who was monitored
Former prime minister Patrick Manning stated yesterday that he was "not aware at all" that President George Maxwell Richards' phone was being monitored by the Strategic Intelligence Agency (SIA).

Nobody above law
Former prime minister Patrick Manning says nobody is above the scrutiny of national security in T&T.

Rowley: Kamla did nothing wrong
Opposition Leader Dr Keith Rowley says Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar did nothing wrong when she revealed in Parliament yesterday that the phones of many prominent citizens were illegally tapped by the Strategic Intelligence Agency (SIA).

Don't blame PNM for actions of Manning
Opposition Leader Dr Keith Rowley yesterday urged the population not to blame the People's National Movement (PNM) for the actions of one man, former prime minister Patrick Manning.

Sad Rowley appeals: Don't blame the PNM
LEADER of the Opposition, Dr Keith Rowley, yesterday sought to distance the PNM from the wiretapping scandal by the secret spy unit, the Security Intelligence Agency (SIA), carried out under the former prime minister Patrick Manning administration.,130737.html

'Looks like the Gestapo have been revived'
Former chief justice Satnarine Sharma yesterday described as malicious and vindictive the order which went out to have his conversations recorded over a period of time while he was in office.

'Victims' speak out
Following are the comments of some of the people who Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar said the Special Intelligence Agency (SIA) spied on...

Manning attacks Govt
PREVENTED by Speaker Wade Mark from breaking parliamentary procedure by responding to a statement made by Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissesar on wiretapping, former Prime Minister Patrick Manning rushed out of the chamber to hold a press conference in what could be interpreted as an act of pique, even as debate in Parliament continued.,130743.html

Spy agency must be made legal
Yesterday's revelation in Parliament by Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar that a state organisation named the Security Intelligence Agency (SIA) had been intercepting the telephone and electronic mail communications of public and private citizens of T&T between March 2005 and October 2010 would have shocked many people in this country.

Shock and shame
The people of Trinidad and Tobago must surely have been shocked by the revelations made by Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar in the House of Representatives yesterday.
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PostSubject: Re: PNM SPY GAMES   PNM SPY GAMES I_icon_minitimeSat Feb 01, 2014 6:34 pm

SAUTT taps Kamla’s phone
By Nalinee Seelal Sunday, September 19 2010

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The Special Anti-Crime Unit of Trinidad and Tobago (SAUTT) was reportedly spying on Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar days before she was officially sworn into office as Prime Minister on May 26 and is apparently ongoing.

Asked by Sunday Newsday about it yesterday the Prime Minister said, “I have heard rumours of wiretapping on my phone. I do not know if these rumours are true, but if they are in fact true it is a gross invasion of my privacy and I would have preferred to have been informed of any wiretapping for security and safety purposes.”

The elite and controversial branch reportedly used wiretapping equipment to monitor conversations and both incoming and outgoing calls and certain words triggered an immediate alarm to SAUTT’s database when mentioned on the phone. These words included kill, rape, murder, abduct, stab/maim among others.

SAUTT sources revealed that SAUTT’s command centre which is located on the 15th floor of the Riverside Plaza has a database which is connected directly to the cellphone or phones belonging to Persad-Bissessar. The command centre of operations unit is manned by 25 retired defence force officers who work eight hour shifts and monitor conversations of key persons in the country, unknown to them. The centre also has TV-like screens which can zoom into any area considered high risk.

Yesterday SAUTT officers defended the move claiming that the decision to tap the phones belonging to Persad-Bissessar was a security measure and not meant for spying or for malicious purposes. Officers added that a decision was taken to protect the Prime Minister in the event of death threats or other threats to her life and they pointed out that tapping into her phones made it easier for them to deal directly with any person with ill intent or who is guilty of putting the Prime Minister’s life at risk.

Officers revealed to Sunday Newsday that this tapping of the phones belonging to the Prime Minister was not told to her.

Early Friday in Parliament during the 2010/2011 Budget debate the Prime Minister revealed, “We will restructure the unit and downsize it to focus on two core functions. Right now it is all over the place, including tapping my cellphone, I understand, and yours.”

During the debate the Prime Minister also announced the down-sizing of SAUTT, which has been the source of much controversy since it came into operation under the previous PNM government. The unit comes directly under the purview of the Minister of National Security rather than that of the Commissioner of Police.

In response to allegations that SAUTT is involved in wiretapping the phones belonging to the Prime Minister, Brigadier Peter Joseph head of SAUTT told Sunday Newsday, “I am not in a position to respond to any statements made by the Prime Minister.

It will be improper and I am not in a position to comment.” He however expressed optimism that future talks with the Prime Minister and other stakeholders on the security of the country will be to the benefit of Trinidad and Tobago.

Asked by Sunday Newsday about his views about proposed downsizing of SAUTT and the separation of the intelligence unit and database of SAUTT to be made privy to other state agencies Joseph reiterated that again he was not in a position to comment on such matters.

Wiretapping in Trinidad and Tobago is illegal, however SAUTT sources told Sunday Newsday that prior to the setting up of SAUTT seven years ago the Police Service had an arrangement with the Telecommunication Services of Trinidad and Tobago (TSTT ) to allow the police to trace phone calls made to kidnap victims. That arrangement still exists.

SAUTT sources pointed out that when the command centre for SAUTT was set up and the database established by a foreign company, the wiretapping technology was installed and has not been used for any malicious purpose but is part of the security arrangements of the unit.

However, a Government source said yesterday that officers assigned to the Unit have indicated to them that wiretapping continues at SAUTT and the information was used for other purposes rather than used as a security measure.

Some officers have indicated to Government that prior to the May 24 General Election they were given instructions to listen to conversations on the phones of Persad-Bissessar and other key persons from the People’s Partnership. Also in her Budget response on Friday the Prime Minister noted that SAUTT was also used to investigate 81-year-old pensioner Percy Villafana the man who objected to former Prime Minister Patrick Manning entering his home prior to the May 24 General Election.

Sunday Newsday understands that the staff at SAUTT comprises 620 persons, with 75 of those being foreigners.

Fifty-five of those foreigners are British police officers who were hired by the former administration and given three-year contracts. Those officers are paid between $100,000 to $120,000 per month and receive housing allowances as much as $15,000 per month to pay for the rental of apartments, condos, townhouses or houses in upscale, gated communities.

These officers also receive special allowances such as free transport, groceries, uniforms and other benefits. Sunday Newsday was reliably informed yesterday that an audit is taking place on the operations of SAUTT and most of those 55 British officers will not get a renewal of their contracts when it expires.

Only those whose skills are needed will be kept as Government believes that locals can do the jobs being performed by these foreign officers. Sunday Newsday also understands that Government is unable to continue to pay the millions of dollars per year to keep these foreign officers at SAUTT.

Superintendent Dave King a former British police officer who was hired in 2007 by the former administration was kept on as a director at SAUTT and continues to enjoy a lucrative salary along with perks. His salary and perks are above the benefits of local directors attached to the unit.

The salary of the head of SAUTT, Brigadier Peter Joseph is $25,000 per month.,0,127779.html
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