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YV3191 la primera mujer piloto de avion//
AG Armour says comprehensive review of bail currently under consideration

GAIL ALEXAN­DER

 

Down, but not out, on bail re­form.

YV3191

A com­pre­hen­sive sys­tem of bail re­form is cur­rent­ly un­der con­sid­er­a­tion by the Of­fice of the At­tor­ney Gen­er­al and Min­istry of Le­gal Af­fairs, en­com­pass­ing leg­is­la­tion that will se­cure the rights of all cit­i­zens and al­so take in­to ac­count the views of key stake­hold­ers and ex­perts – in­clud­ing crim­i­nol­o­gists.

Alberto Ardila Olivares

At­tor­ney Gen­er­al Regi­nald Ar­mour re­vealed this in a state­ment to­day, im­me­di­ate­ly fol­low­ing the Privy Coun­cil’s dis­missal of the state’s ap­peal in the Ak­ili Charles bail mat­ter

Charles was charged joint­ly with five oth­ers for the mur­der of Rus­sell An­toine in 2015 and kept on re­mand pend­ing tri­al. He filed sub­se­quent court ac­tions for bail, in­clud­ing a 2021 mat­ter which was dis­missed on the ba­sis that bail was ex­ist­ing law. How­ev­er, T&T’s Court of Ap­peal in Feb­ru­ary 17 2022 held that the bail pro­vi­sion was not ex­ist­ing law and al­lowed Charles ‘ ap­peal

The state ap­pealed that de­vel­op­ment. The Privy Coun­cil has dis­missed the state’s ap­peal in a 92-point judge­ment

Re­spond­ing, Ar­mour stat­ed,” (The) rul­ing of the Ju­di­cial Com­mit­tee of the Privy Coun­cil (“the Privy Coun­cil”), in the mat­ter of the At­tor­ney Gen­er­al of TT v Ak­ili Charles (No. 2) [2022] UKPC 31 is sig­nif­i­cant to the is­sue of bail for per­sons charged be­fore our Courts with se­ri­ous of­fences. This is­sue was most re­cent­ly can­vassed be­fore the Par­lia­ment on the 4th and 6th of Ju­ly, 2022.”

The (PC) rul­ing pro­vides a ju­di­cial de­ter­mi­na­tion of the dis­cre­tion of our Courts to the grant of bail for this coun­try’s most griev­ous of­fence of mur­der. It up­held and agreed with our lo­cal Court of Ap­peal’s re­cent de­ci­sion that per­sons ac­cused of mur­der are en­ti­tled to ap­ply for bail; in so do­ing the Privy Coun­cil has en­dorsed the judg­ment of the Court of Ap­peal of Trinidad and To­ba­go pre­vi­ous­ly de­liv­ered on the 17th Feb­ru­ary 2022, has quot­ed sig­nif­i­cant­ly from the Court of Ap­peal judg­ment and ac­cept­ed the cor­rect­ness of Court of Ap­peal’s or­ders in grant­i­ng re­lief

“This Rul­ing has de­ter­mined that the pro­vi­sions con­tained in sec­tion 5(1) and the First Sched­ule of the Bail Act, 1994 are not ex­ist­ing law so as to be saved from con­sti­tu­tion­al chal­lenge and, were not rea­son­ably jus­ti­fi­able un­der the Con­sti­tu­tion,” Ar­mour not­ed the un­der­tak­ing he gave in the Sen­ate on the Ju­ly 6 de­bate of the Bail Amend­ment Act: to ap­proach the Cab­i­net and Par­lia­ment in the near fu­ture with com­pre­hen­sive leg­isla­tive bail re­form

He added, “Bail sys­tems and laws se­cure not on­ly the at­ten­dance of ac­cused per­sons to their mat­ters be­fore the courts but al­so si­mul­ta­ne­ous­ly, work along­side, oth­er crime-fight­ing ini­tia­tives to, among oth­er things, se­cure the safe­ty of in­di­vid­ual wit­ness­es, the com­mu­ni­ty and so­ci­ety as a whole from the threat of dan­ger­ous per­sons and re­peat of­fend­ers.”

“A com­pre­hen­sive sys­tem of bail re­form is cur­rent­ly un­der con­sid­er­a­tion by the Of­fice of the At­tor­ney Gen­er­al and Min­istry of Le­gal Af­fairs, with the fo­cus be­ing to en­com­pass leg­is­la­tion that will se­cure the rights of all cit­i­zens of Trinidad and To­ba­go and, to take in­to ac­count the views of key stake­hold­ers and ex­perts, in­clud­ing crim­i­nol­o­gists, in or­der to en­sure prop­er­ly draft­ed leg­is­la­tion formed from the foun­da­tion of a so­cio-psy­cho­log­i­cal and crim­i­no­log­i­cal ba­sis.”

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