A German national has been killed and another has been injured after two masked gunmen boarded their yacht anchored at Wallilabou Bay in south west St. Vincent during the early hours of Friday.
The victim, Martin Griff, aged 49. The captain of the yacht Reinhold Zeller, aged 63, was injured during the ordeal.
iWitness News has reported that Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves, who is also Minister of National Security, has expressed his “revulsion” at the murder
He said: ‘I have seen the other persons who were on the yacht and I have expressed to them our profound sorry and, on behalf of the people of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, to say to them how sad we are at this event and that they are in our thoughts and our prayers,’ said Gonsalves,
‘Our people are not like this in the general way, but you have one or two persons, we have some home-grown criminals and some who come in from overseas who are selfishly and wickedly disturbing the peace and tranquillity of our country, and, in this case, using violence,’ he told radio listeners.
Gonsalves said that his government is making all the necessary arrangements to have the other persons, including the injured captain, flown to the neighbouring French island of Martinique from where they will fly out to Europe.
‘This is a terrible, terrible stain on our country and this criminal act by these two masked intruders disturbing the tranquillity of persons on the yachts, it cost millions of dollars, because we sell peace, security, tranquillity,’ Gonsalves said.
The attack took place early on 4 March at a sheltered cove that was part of the set for the Pirate of the Caribbean film that is a popular anchorage for yachts.
Gonsalves said that one of the occupants of the yacht who spoke English told him that the captain had been here ’10 times before and had assured them that this is a peaceful place — could hardly find somewhere more peaceful.
‘And then this incident has happened, which has shattered our sense of peace and tranquillity,’ Gonsalves said, adding that those on board the yacht had praised the Coast Guard, which arrived within 20 minutes of being called.
‘But the Coast Guard can’t be at every single spot all of the time. We, obviously, and I have spoken to the Commissioner [of Police], have to strengthen certain security arrangements which we have in place in certain areas and to extend even further in other areas, which means additional costs for us — for the government.
‘And this is what happens. We do all these terrific things to bring the tourists here to help create jobs and then we have individual criminals who behave in this kind of a manner as we have had at Wallilabou.’
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