Asterio Takasi, Special Assistant to the Vice President and Minister of Justice, has been assigned to take on the responsibility of receiving and compiling reports of police complaints.  And Shelly Remengesau was appointed the Public Relations Officer (PIO) of the Ministry of Justice, according to a memorandum issued by the Vice President and Minister of Justice Uduch Sengebau-Senior on January 10.

Complaints and allegations of misconduct by police officers will now be received and reported by Mr. Takasi, according to the memo from Vice President Sengebau-Senior.  The recent incident involving an adult male inmate allegedly assaulting a minor female inmate had raised allegations of misconduct on the part of the police.

Two high-rank police officers at the Department of Corrections have been suspended while the investigation continues into the alleged incident.

“In the absence of a Police Practices Committee, and until we hire a permanent Director for the Office of Professional Standards, it is crucial for the Ministry of Justice to maintain transparency and professional agency standards, especially in dealing with public allegations against law enforcement officers of the Ministry of Justice,” explained Vice President and Minister of Justice Uduch Sengebau-Senior of the reason to appoint Asterio Takasi to take on the responsibility of compiling and reporting complaints of alleged police misconduct.

The Office of Professional Standards was the new bureau created by Executive Order No. 462, reorganizing the Ministry of Justice.  The new office was to develop professional standards for the MOJ and to collect and address allegations of misconduct of law enforcement officers.

Until the position of Director of this bureau is hired, Mr. Takasi will be doing the work of compiling complaints reports. (By: L.N. Reklai)

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