A St. Kitts and Nevis Customs Officer who intercepted six firearms and 400 rounds of ammunition is the recipient of the Sean Symonette Award for 2009.
Ms. Aiesha Charles was honored by the Caribbean Customs Law Enforcement Council (CCLEC) at its annual Conference on May 6.
The St. Kitts and Nevis Customs and Excise Department saw it necessary to nominate Miss Charles on April 12, 2010 after she intercepted six guns, including a high-powered rifle and four hundred (400) rounds of ammunition, while stationed at the Courier Section of the department.
Ms. Charles testified and assisted in the conviction of the accused in a court of law. The accused was found guilty on all counts and was sentenced to twenty-eight years, to be served consecutively.
“This was seen as a significant success for the Customs Department, as we strive to play our role in the fight to interdict illegal weapons and their related criminal activity. Ms. Charles has shown that she sees this threat to the security and stability of the federation as a matter of critical importance and as such has been exerting substantial effort in her responsibilities,” the department said in a news release.
“Ms. Charles has shown remarkable leadership skills, and she is admired by both peers and senior management of the department,” the release added.
The Sean Symonette Award is named in honor of the integrity and sacrifice of Bahamian Customs Officer Sean Symonette who was murdered for the integrity he showed in the performance of his duties.
The award recognizes employees, units, or organizations demonstrating an extraordinary commitment to the values of their customs service through exceptional acts of courage, honor, and dedication or who have made significant progress in incorporating the twelve key factors specified by the Bridgetown Declaration into their own integrity program.
The award was presented to the St. Kitts and Nevis Customs and Excise Department at the 32nd CCLEC Annual Conference, though it does not have to be awarded on an annual basis.