Latest: News

Govít to overhaul jury trial offences

Published: Friday January 25, 2013 | 12:36 pm Comments 0
Minister of National Security Peter Bunting - file photo.
Minister of National Security Peter Bunting - file photo.

Monique Grange, Assistant News Editor
The Gleaner/Power 106 News Centre

Minister of National Security Peter Bunting says legislative changes are being considered which are aimed at reducing the number of offences that are tried by a jury.

He said the measure would also seek to address the culture of fear where witnesses are afraid to testify in court especially in murder cases.

According to him, that culture of fear has resulted in low conviction rates in murder cases against gang members or known criminals.

Bunting pointed out that some jurors are also fearful of serving in that capacity, as they sometimes face intimidation.

He said the Justice Minister Mark Golding has those legislative changes high on his to do list.

The national security minister insists the amendments will be made despite opposition from defence lawyers, who may think such changes will reduce their success rate.

Last week, judges assigned to the Circuit Court in St. James raised concern about what they described as the overwhelming number of not-guilty verdicts returned by juries in recent times.

They claimed that even in cases where the evidence was strong, the defendants were found not guilty.

Like our new Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/gleanerjamaica

Follow us on Twitter http://twitter.com/JamaicaGleaner

radio@gleanerjm.com

Share |

The comments on this page do not necessarily reflect the views of The Gleaner.
The Gleaner reserves the right not to publish comments that may be deemed libelous, derogatory or indecent. Please keep comments short and precise. A maximum of 8 sentences should be the target. Longer responses/comments should be sent to "Letters of the Editor" using the feedback form provided.
blog comments powered by Disqus
Videos

Top Jobs

View all Jobs