U.S. Virgin Islands Police Union Ex-President Accused of Theft

Donald Liburd may have had good reason for overstaying his welcome. On August 29, members of the St. Thomas-St. John Police Benevolent Association voted to file a criminal report alleging misconduct and theft of more than $100,000 in union funds by Liburd, who had served as its president until this summer. St. Thomas-St. John Police Chief Rodney Querrard Sr. refused to release the report, but confirmed its receipt. “It’s under investigation, and if that information comes out later, then that will be in court,” said Querrard. “There’s information on those that could affect the investigation.” 

Police Benevolent Association Local 816, which represents police officers in the U.S. Virgin Islands, St. Thomas-St. John, has been a union in turmoil these past few months. Donald Liburd, an active detective on the force, was elected president in 2008. His term was set to last two years. Yet once in office, he refused to hold a scheduled election. Apparently, he had his enemies as well as allies. At a meeting this July 1, the union board voted to relieve him of his post. His replacement, Police Cpl. Elroy Raymo, made a discovery: More than $100,000 was missing from the PBA local coffers. The evidence, Raymo eventually concluded, pointed to Liburd. “It’s an embezzlement case against the former PBA president and his administration,” he said, refusing to elaborate on any details. Liburd soon may have to.