On November 14, 2022, the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Implementation Agency for Crime and Security (IMPACS), in partnership with United States’ law enforcement agencies, launched the CARICOM Crime Gun Intelligence Unit (CGIU).
CARICOM Council of Ministers of National Security agreed to the establishment of the CGIU to provide intelligence analysis on illicit firearms and ammunition and to support national member state investigations. The unit will support law enforcement agencies in CARICOM member states in the seizure of firearms, related parts, and components as well as in identifying, charging, and prosecuting co-conspirators.
The unit will facilitate collaboration and cooperation among regional and international law enforcement agencies including CARICOM member states and United States’ agencies, including the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives; Homeland Security Investigations; and Customs and Border Protection. Other U.S. and international law enforcement agencies such as the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Bureau of Industry and Security, and INTERPOL will also collaborate and cooperate through the CGIU.
Heeding the call of CARICOM heads of government over the years, the United States is investing significantly in strengthening interdiction at its own ports as well as in ports of partner countries, increasing information and intelligence sharing with CARICOM member states, and building capacity in members states in areas such as firearm identification.
All of these activities have led to increased interdiction and prosecution. The United States, through provisions under the “Stop Illegal Trafficking in Firearms Act,” also assigned further penalties for those who intend to promote transnational organized crime through smuggling firearms and ammunition out of the United States. By taking these steps, CARICOM IMPACS, in partnership with the United States, intends to stem the flow of illicit firearms into the region and to prosecute those who traffic these arms, thereby creating a deterrent.
The CGIU is located in Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago.
Please see a fact sheet on U.S.-Caribbean Cooperation to Stop Firearms Trafficking which was released on March 1, 2023: https://www.state.gov/u-s-caribbean-cooperation-to-stop-firearms-trafficking/