Police issued a stern reminder tonight that “formal complaints are required by law”, for the police to investigate allegations against “a suspected paedophile”.

This after allegations were circulated on the local social media circuit.

A police spokesperson said: “Online statements and social media posts do not qualify as formal complaints.

“We appreciate that this is a sensitive subject and that witnesses and victims are sometimes reluctant to come forward.

“The BPS works closely with the Department of Child & Family Services on these matters and we take such allegations seriously,”

But he cautioned members of the public that making “unsubstantiated statements or circulating rumours on social media…may constitute slander or libel”.

He also “reassured” residents “that any acts of inappropriate interaction reported to police involving adults and children – or adults and other adults – will be addressed sensitively and in confidence”.

“To make a report, please contact the Vulnerable Persons Unit on 247-1678 or e-mail group-vpu@bps.bm.

“Alternatively, the independent and confidential Crime Stoppers hotline 800-8477 can be used to make a report, as well as the Crime Stoppers Bermuda website www.crimestoppers.bm.

“But we continue to caution members of the public about making unsubstantiated statements or circulating rumours on social media that may constitute slander or libel,” he said.

“Likewise, members of the public are reminded that any acts of vigilante justice – in relation to any alleged or actual incident – that come to the attention of the police, will be appropriately investigated.”