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Keith Clarke murder trial to get under way today

Published:Monday | March 9, 2015 | 9:56 AM

After numerous delays, the highly anticipated trial of three soldiers charged with killing businessman Keith Clarke is expected to get underway today in the Home Circuit Court. 

Lance Corporals Greg Tinglin and Odel Buckley and Private Arnold Henry have been charged with Clarke's murder.

High Court judge Lloyd Hibbert is expected to preside over the trial in Courtroom Number 1 at the Supreme Court building downtown, Kingston. 

 

Jovan Johnson reports

When the case was last mentioned in October last year, Justice Gloria Smith said today, March 9 would be a firm date for the start of the trial. 

And Director of Public Prosecutions, Paula Llewellyn, told the court then that the Crown was ready to present its case.

She said 16 witnesses will be called.

One of the defence lawyers, Howard Hamilton, had told the court that he needed the time to interview the witnesses.

The soldiers were charged in July 2012. 

However, the road to the trial has not been smooth with various reasons advanced for the case being stalled. 

In one noted instance, the DPP accused the Independent Commission of Investigations (INDECOM) of acting without the directive of the prosecution when it requested the retesting of bullet fragments.

Clarke, who was an accountant, was shot dead by members of the security forces at his East Kirkland Heights home in St Andrew in May 2010 during the hunt for West Kingston crime lord Christopher ‘Dudus’ Coke.

A post mortem report showed that Clarke was shot more than 20 times.