Jamaica’s Justice Minister Delroy Chuck refuses to pay Lawyers to defend Police officers charged with murder over four years ago. The accused officers are still in jail even though they too are entitled to the presumption of innocence under the law.
Despite commitments from the Government that officers charged with serious crimes during the execution of their duties would be assisted with the legal fees for their defense.
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According to local reporting, Justice Glen Brown delivered the warning after the murder trial of police Corporal Kevin Adams, who has been in custody for four years, was again stalled in the Home Circuit Court because of the stalemate over the legal fees.
Chuck sought to make it clear that the Government only offered to make a “contribution” to the cops’ legal defense.
“For the judge to say that the case will be stopped because the Government has not paid is quite out of order and injudicious. A judge is speaking out of turn and out of order for making such comments,” Chuck said.
Justice Brown shot back after instructing that the three cases – involving six policemen be placed in his courtroom on Monday. “So they have the whole weekend to do what they have to do“. “Justice Brown said.
Now there we have it.
A member of an independent co-equal branch of government doing his job as Chuck said it should be done, the only difference is that the defendants are police officers and Delroy Chuck cannot have police officers benefitting from the very policy he has put in place.