Defense Attorney Questions Constitutionality of Prosecution Appeal

Defense Attorney, Bert Samuels, says the pending bill allowing the prosecution the right to appeal acquittals, in certain circumstances, may be in conflict with the constitution.

He says there needs to be a discussion on the proposal. Justice Minister, Delroy Chuck, told Nationwide News this morning that he’s bringing the bill to parliament in January.

Mr. Samuels says the constitution prevents a person from being tried twice– a procedural defense called ‘double jeopardy’.

He says prosecutors should focus their energies on clearing the backlog in the system.

Mr. Samuels says attorneys should be consulted before the bill reaches parliament. He’s questioning when will legislation be introduced to assist defendants in criminal matters.

The Justice Minister has said stakeholders, including attorneys, will have an opportunity to make objections and recommendations to the bill when it goes to parliament.