Basseterre, St. Kitts, November 11, 2015 (SKNIS): The Honourable Vincent Byron, Attorney General was appointed Chairman of the Criminal Justice Strategic Board (CJSB) by Dr. the Honourable Timothy Harris, Prime Minister of St. Kitts and Nevis and Minister of National Security, during the official launch of the CJSB at the Police Training Complex, on Wednesday, November 11, 2015.
The Attorney General deemed the launch as a very important aspect of the Criminal Justice System (CJS).
“The Criminal Justice System is made up of a number of entities, each plays a different role in a system designed to address the communities expectations that people who break the law are punished and face appropriate consequences,” he said, while adding that it is also designed to ensure that victims of crimes are treated with respect and sensitivity.
He stated that when a crime is committed and the alleged offender is apprehended, the CJS commences operation.
“It is a continuum along which the alleged offender will travel with a point of departure, dependent upon their innocence or guilt,” said Honourable Byron, adding that along this continuum there are numerous different agencies that play important and varying roles.
Honourable Vincent Bryon stated that is it important to understand the function of the CJSB and outlined its first priority.
“For too long, the various agencies that we have had, work as a broad ambit of the system and for too often we have had situations where each one operates by itself,” the Attorney General said. “The first objective that the board does is to address linking the agencies so the Criminal Justice Strategic Board then becomes an inter-agency network that we all will work together with some common objective.”
He further stated that the reduction of crime has to be one major issue of the Board, as well as establishing certain measurable objectives in dealing with the overcrowding at Her Majesty’s Prison.
The CJSB consists of 14 other members including Mr. Arudranauth Gossai, Acting Director of Public Prosecution, Mr. Ashiela Connor, Acting Superintendent of Prisons, Lt. Col Patrick Wallace, Commander of St. Kitts and Nevis Defence Force (SKNDF), Ms. Adele Williams, Director of New Horizons Juvenile Rehabilitation Centre (NHJRC), ACP Ian Queeley, Assistant Commission of Police-Crime, Ms. Debra Matthew, Director of Probation and Child Protection Services, Ms. Jacqueline Somersall-Berry, Director of Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU), Dr. Tricia Esdaille, Chief Education Officer, Mr. Everette O’Garro, Chief Fire Officer and Mr. Georid Belle, Comptroller of Customs from the St. Kitts end as well as representatives from the Nevis Island Administration(NIA) namely, Mr. Lynel Nolan, Former Police Officer, Ms. Heidi Sutton, Lawyer, Mr. David Hendrickson, Former Fire Officer; Head of Security at Nevis Air and Sea Port Authority (NASPA) and Inspector Stephen Hector, Police Prosecutor (Nevis).