Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : August 8th 2013 Contents A11
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On July 26, President Anthony Carmona
revoked the legal notice which said August
2 would be the date when the Adminis-
tration of Justice (Indictable Proceedings)
Act, 2011 would have come into effect.
The controversial Section 34, which has
since been repealed, was part of that act.
When it is implemented, the act will
abolish preliminary inquiries and thus reduce
the caseload of the magistrates courts and
the backlog of cases throughout the judicial
However, some lawyers had pointed out
that there were loopholes in the new law
and that parts of it conflicted with other
legislation. In addition, none of the extra
staff and additional resources for the judi-
ciary had been put in place.
Under the new law, masters of the High
Court would oversee the paper committals
that would replace preliminary inquiries.
None have as yet been recruited or trained.
While Dana Seetahal, SC, welcomed the
revocation of the original proclamation, she
urged the authorities not to ignore that act
as, once amended and implemented, it could
serve as a very useful piece of legislation.
"I hope the authorities do not just leave
it in limbo. During the time given to put
things in place, nothing was done," Seetahal
She suggested that all contributions made
by the various stakeholders, including herself,
president of the Criminal Bar Association
Pamela Elder, SC, and Osbourne Charles,
SC, must be taken into careful considera-
Seetahal and Elder raised concerns that
paedophiles and others who committed
offences against children might walk free
because of loopholes in the act.
Elder had also questioned how evidence
and exhibits would be treated when dealing
with multiple accused.
Seetahal said one area which should be
amended was Section Four, which took into consid-
eration a number of issues, including the movement
of evidence before the master to the High Court.
She added: "We need to have a proper system put
in place, rather than having one just imposed on us
and having everything in disarray. We need to have
a justice system everyone would benefit from.
"In reviewing the concerns and recommendations
put forward the focus must be on tidying up and
putting things in place, like masters, determining
what resources are needed for the Director of Public
Prosecutions and what was also needed for the police
and all of this must be synchronised with the act."
The amendments and the implementation of the
new act would then depend on the Government and
its relationship with the judiciary, Seetahal said.
However, if all goes smoothly, she predicted the
new legislation could come into effect within the
next 18 months.
"A lot it has to do with the political will and its
connection to the judiciary.
"The High Court is on a break now but I expect
any decision regarding when further discussions
would be held would be soon, by the opening of the
new law term in September," Seetahal said.
She added she was also looking forward to Chief
Justice Ivor Archie s speech at the opening ceremony
and in particular what he had to say about the act.
Dana: Don't leave Indictable Act in limbo
Police have recovered more than 225 illegal guns
in T&T for the year, police public information officer
ASP Joanne Archie said at the weekly police press
"However, for the week July 28 to August 3, ten
guns were recovered," Archie said.
The latest seizures took place during an anti-crime
exercise in Laventille on Tuesday night.
During the exercise, which was conducted in the
Beverly Hills community, officers of the Inter-Agency
Task Force (IATF) recovered a 9 mm pistol, an extended
pistol magazine and 44 rounds of assorted ammunition.
The officers also recovered almost $3,000 worth of
marijuana and destroyed 80 fully-grown trees.
Several hours after the seizure, the same group of
officers stopped a resident of Eastern Quarry, Laventille.
While searching the man, officers found a loaded 9
mm pistol with 12 rounds of ammunition in his waist.
The man was arrested and charged with gun posses-
Insp Mohammed, Cpl Smith and PC Flemming of
the IATF were involved in the exercise. (DA)
225 illegal guns removed
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