Justice of the Peace charged in fraudulent land deal freed
Jennifer Keane-Dawes, a paralegal and Justice of the Peace (JP) who was charged with conspiracy to defraud, today walked free when Justice Lorna Shelly Williams dismissed the case on the grounds of lack of evidence.
It was alleged that Keane-Dawes along with Zela Johnson with whom she was jointly charged, orchestrated a plan to take over a parcel of land owned by a farmer in Denbigh, Clarendon.
According to the police report, in 1996, the complainant gave Johnson his certificate of title for safe keeping.
However, two years after, Johnson reported that the title was lost and applied for a replacement.
It was then reported that she added herself, her ex-husband and her three daughters as co-owners of the land.
Further, the report indicated that Johnson also successfully applied to transfer ownership of the property, claiming that the complainant had gifted the land to her and the other co-owners.
Johnson then reportedly caused the land to be subdivided into 17 plots by virtue of a transfer of land by partition document, which was purportedly signed by the complainant and witnessed by Keane-Dawes in 1996 in her capacity as a JP.
In August 2013, Keane-Dawes was charged with conspiracy as a consequence of her decision to witness the document.
However, the Crown on Wednesday offered no evidence against Keane-Dawes and she was subsequently freed by the judge.