Sun | Aug 19, 2018

Right to freedom of expression

Published:Friday | March 25, 2011 | 12:00 AM


In The Sunday Gleaner of March 20, in an article titled 'A tale of two secrets' by Lambert Brown, he wrote in the context of the 'Dudus' Coke extradition request that: "There is no constitutional right in Jamaica or anywhere else in the world to engage in 'a criminal conspiracy' to import illegal firearms or export cocaine."

With respect, that is devoid of logic. There is a constitutional right to freedom of expression. It affords you, Mr Brown, the protection to write drivel. It is a right which countries like the United States (and, dare I say, Jamaica) hold near and dear and call fundamental.

lawful circumstances

This right allows one to, for instance, speak on a telephone and, indeed, plan a criminal conspiracy to import firearms or export cocaine. That is trite. Parliament, in its wisdom within the strict confines of the Interception of Communications Act, has prescribed the lawful circumstances and manner in which the law will permit the interception and disclosure of the substance and content of that telephone call; the fundamental freedom notwithstanding. That act - yes, Mr Brown, Jamaican law - was indeed breached in the Coke extradition case.

That, at the core, is the plain and simple truth. This remains so despite the many and varied attempts to obfuscate that truth.

I have no doubt you will agree that it would be a dangerous precedent to set when we extradite our citizens upon evidence which breaches the laws of our sovereign nation - regardless of Mr Brown's or anyone else's opinion as to the guilt or innocence of the citizen.

I am, etc.,


Kingston 8