Les Green fires back
Former Assistant Commissioner of Police Les Green has said he did not bring criminal charges against a Jamaican official he was investigating because he felt that any unilateral action by him would be "counterproductive".
Green's assertion, in a letter to The Gleaner, is the latest in a public row with the country's chief prosecutor, Paula Llewellyn, over the police's handling of the 2011 probe against the official.
The controversy was ignited last Sunday when Green, a former Scotland Yard detective, was quoted in a Miami Herald newspaper article as saying that he investigated allegations that the official tried to arrange at least two murders.
According to the publication, Green said he found enough evidence to recommend that prosecutors lay charges against the official and went further to indicate that a 2011 ruling by the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (ODPP) supported his finding.
But Llewellyn, the director of public prosecutions, fired back, explaining that her office gave Green and his investigators a "legal opinion" in June 2011 with recommendations that were based on an assessment of the materials they provided.
She also pointed out that her office made it clear to Green and his team that the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) Act and the Jamaican Constitution empower the police to lay criminal charges without reference to the DPP. "Only Mr Green, the chief investigator, can explain why he did not proceed to arrest and charge the target of this investigation if he was convinced that he had sufficient material to do so rather than send this file to the ODPP," Llewellyn said.
Yesterday, Green said he was fully aware that he could lay charges against the official, but explained that the probe was a complex one that required a "comprehensive prosecution strategy".
"This investigation directly linked a number of cases which were already before the courts and in the hands of the ODPP," he said.
"So, clearly, a new strategy was required to ensure that all the identified persons could be prosecuted according to the available evidence. Furthermore, I have always believed in bringing effective prosecutions in a partnership between investigators and prosecutors rather than bringing charges in isolation," he reasoned.