Anarchy In the Caribbean: Escaped prisoners and hundreds of looters armed with guns and knives terrorise hurricane-hit islands as police from Europe are flown in to restore order

Monday, September 11, 2017
By Paul Martin

Escaped prisoners armed with guns and knives are terrifying islanders as they recover from the hurricane
On St Martin, the regional police chief said a gang of 600 ‘local delinquents’ was responsible for the trouble
Sam Branson, son of Virgin tycoon Richard Branson, said: ‘It’s really sad to say that there is a lot of civil unrest’
Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson said 50 police officers have gone to British Virgin Islands to tackle looting
France, which oversees Saint Barthelemy, said police presence had been boosted to 500 amid lawlessness
Terrified tourists stranded on St Maarten say looters have started raiding hotel rooms, homes and shops
Many tourists are locking themselves in their hotel rooms as the only way to stay safe during the unrest
Innocent residents are taking matters into their own hands, arming themselves with machetes
In some shops, even the mannequins have been stripped of their clothes and the coathangers are bare
One bar manager says there is ‘no rules, no law and no protection’ in Maho Beach, St Martin

11 September 2017

Escaped prisoners and hundreds of looters armed with guns and knives are terrorising hurricane-hit islands amid anarchy in the Caribbean, it has emerged.

Britain and France have both sent extra police resources and the Netherlands have dispatched troops to the region amid reports of lawlessness in the wake of the devastating 185mph storm.

Terrified tourists on the Dutch-French island of St Martin have described cowering in their hotel rooms amid reports up to 600 looters are running riot. One soldier posted on the island said he was ‘stopping a looter every 10 minutes’.

Sam Branson, the son of Virgin tycoon Richard Branson, whose luxury resort in the British Virgin Islands was destroyed in the storm, warned of ‘civil unrest’ and said prisoners had escaped.

Frightened residents have also complained of looting on the islands of Anguilla, Barbuda and St. Barts after howling 185mph Irma tore through the region.

The storefronts in the centre of Marigot are testament to the paranoid atmosphere gripping the island. Every shop has its metal shutters drawn. Some show signs of being forced open with crowbars.

On one corner, a clothing shop stands open to the elements, its windows smashed in. The mannequins have been stripped of their clothes; the coathangers are bare.

A soldier posted in the Bellevue commercial district to the south revealed he was stopping a looting every ten minutes.

The Rest…HERE

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