Court agrees attorney/client privilege breached
The Court of Appeal today ruled that the police breached the Legal Professional Privileges when they searched the law offices of attorney at law Ernie Smith and Hugh Thompson.
The police obtained search warrants under the Mutual Assistance Act to search the offices in connection with investigations into money laundering and drug related offences against 56-year-old Canadian Robert Bigwell.
The lawyers complained that the searches breached the Attorney and client privilege.
The Jamaican Bar Association took the matter to Court of Appeal, which agreed that the searches were against the constitution.
The court ordered that the documents that were seized from the offices be returned to the lawyers.
It also ruled that the warrants that were issued for the search were unlawful.
The Attorney General, the Director of Public Prosecutions and Deputy Superintendent of Police Carl Plumber were the respondents in the case.