1 Aug 2003

Fiji govt to tighten checks on security company employees

11:15 am on 1 August 2003

The Fiji government is drawing up legislation to tighten up the operations of security companies, after a number of security guards have been prosectued for being involved in major robberies.

The minister for information says security guards have also been implicated in providing criminals with confidential information about the financial resources of companies they were guarding.

Simione Kaitani says past experience has demonstrated a lack of professionalism, integrity and credibility by the constant breach of trust by security personnel.

Yesterday, four men and two women armed with knives, crow bars and axes broke into the Lautoka offices of the Armourguard security company, and made off with half a million US dollars in foreign currency.

The money was in the care of Armourguard awaiting transport to Nadi Airport to be flown abroad.

A police spokesman says the robbers appeared to know the exact time the vaults would open before they struck.

Last month, an employee of Armourguard Limited was arrested for being implicated in a 250 thousand US dollar robbery at Westpac Bank, money which the company was supposed to be transporting for the bank.

As a result some banks have ended their contracts with Armourguard, following the company's refusal to take responsibility for the money.