Barbara Gayle, Justice Coordinator
Attorney-at-law Raphael Codlin, who applied for final leave for 53-year-old legal secretary Annette Livingston to take her case to the United Kingdom-based Privy Council, says he is studying the judgment pursuant to taking steps that are conducive to the protection of her interest.
On Wednesday, The Gleaner, after making checks at the Court of Appeal Registry, had reported that Livingston was still in prison because the registry had not received the official documents for her release from the Privy Council.
However, Livingston was released from prison on Christmas Eve on the initiative of Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Paula Llewellyn.
Although the procedure is for the Court of Appeal Registry to send the official documents to the prison authority, Llewellyn explained that because of the urgency of the matter when she accessed her email on Christmas Eve and saw correspondence from her lawyers in London with the copy of the official order from Buckingham Palace, she decided to act on them.
Llewellyn, noting that the order had stated that Livingston should be released immediately, said she wrote a cover letter with a copy of the order to the prison and, on that basis, Livingston was released.
She said she also sent copies of the documents to the Court of Appeal Registry.
Llewellyn said last Wednesday she received, through the mail, the official order for Livingston's release but up to that time, the Court of Appeal Registry had not yet received the document.
Livingston, of Buff Bay, Portland, was convicted in 2003 along with two men for the murder of prominent attorney-at-law Shirley Playfair in April 2000. She had been in custody since 2000.
On October 22 last year, the Privy Council overturned her conviction and remitted the case to the Jamaican authorities for a decision to be made within 28 days as to whether she should face a retrial. The DPP decided that she should not be tried again.
Ramone Drysdale, 33, and 61-year-old taxi driver Ashley Ricketts, both of Kingston addresses, were also convicted of the murder. The Court of Appeal set aside Ricketts' conviction and substituted a conviction for manslaughter. The men are in prison serving their sentences.
Codlin said Livingston was locked up for 12 years and he was now taking instructions in the matter.