THE EDITOR, Sir:
FEAR AND abhorrence of governmental power to try people twice for the same conduct is one of the oldest principles enshrined in the law. Throughout time, it has been firmly established in England as "the universal maxim of the common law". The Jamaican legal system is commonly referred to as the "common law" system (no pun intended). This system originated in England, which is often regarded as the home of many legal scholars.
The recent occurrences in the Carlos Hill case have left me rather concerned and, to a great degree, worried about the judicial process and supreme power that lies within our judiciary. I cannot, in this day and age, consider three years to be in adherence to our constitutional rights to a fair and speedy trial.
The prosecution's recent acts may have been a move to strengthen their case and prevent any further loopholes, but what happens to the many lives that are on hold because of this matter? The very patriotic jurors are faced with no equitable form of compensation for these constant delays.
The taxpayers of this country must hold the persons appointed to serve in our judicial system accountable and efficient. No lawyer, judge, police, clerk of courts, or stenographer will appear at Court out of goodwill. Someone pays them, and I think we have paid far too much for nothing.
A recent landmark similar case was Olint investments. The main principal, David Smith, was brought before the courts in the United States in 2010, and in August 2011 was sentenced to 30 years' imprisonment.
Insofar as the facts of the case are concerned, there can be no justification for the lengthy and circuitous actions involved. Whether Carlos Hill is innocent or not, the taxpayers of Jamaica deserve a speedy trial.