Answers needed – Lluidas Vale family not allowed to see man locked up 10 days under SOE

A family in the Lluidas Vale area of St Catherine is claiming that it is not being provided with information or being allowed to see a loved one who police and soldiers removed from his rural home 10 days ago and have detained several miles away at Tamarind Farm detention centre in Spanish Town.

Spanish Town, as well as Lluidas Vale where the detainee lives, is part of the St Catherine North Police Division which is under a state of public emergency.

In relation to how 22-year-old Kemar Newman was held, the family told The Beacon that the youngster returned home from work last week Thursday evening and was in his yard, which is located along the main roadway in Lluidas Vale.

Members of the security forces, who don’t usually work in the community, were passing and saw Kemar in his yard, said Oneal Newman, one of the detainee’s brothers.

The police and soldiers, who ordered Kemar to leave his home, took him away in a van.

“They just took him away when they were passing; dem never come for him specifically,” Oneal claimed.

He further stated that, although the JCF has refused to provide the family with information about the detention, he has heard rumours that his brother is being held as a suspect in relation to certain incidents in Lluidas Vale.

“Nobody naad talk to the family; wi nuh know why they holding him,” Oneal said.

He noted that his brother remains behind bars for more than a week although no charge has been laid against him and no evidence has been found to suggest he is a criminal.

“Dem fingerprint him in Linstead, and then transport him from there to Tamarind Farm [detention centre]. The police from Tamarind Farm called the station here in Lluidas Vale who don’t have anything [incriminating on my brother]. The Lluidas Vale police said they don’t have anything bad to say about him, but dem still holding the man in detention centre and naah let him goh. If you hold the man and don’t have anything on him, why you holding him so long for him to lose his job?” Oneal reasoned.

He further told The Beacon that relatives of the detainee repeatedly visited the Tamarind Farm detention centre, and were told that they are not allowed to see Kemar.

“Wi goh down deh and can’t get to see him; they only took the things wi carry and seh they going to give to him. They not allowing us to talk to him or anything like that,” Oneal added.

Reports emerged last week that Kemar probably was not yet released because he was heavily involved in skin bleaching, and so he no longer resembles the image on his identification card. “If a man even a bleach, a fi him life; yuh can’t tell him what to do,” Oneal said, adding”: “If him want bleach, him bleach.”

According to Oneal, the family is upset. “The family is cut up about the whole system to know our little brother, although him bleach out, is locked up and wi don’t know what is happening to him today. Wi know him a nuh criminal,” he declared.

The Beacon has been trying to get a response from the Jamaica Constabulary Force, but that was not forthcoming up to publication time.


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