By: Gavincia Clarke
(CHARLESTOWN, NEVIS)- The District ‘C’ Magistrate Court closed its doors for all criminal matters on Tuesday, December 17, 2013. Her Honor, Magistrate Yasmine Clarke, made the announcement in Court on Tuesday that all court matters pending before the Court would be adjourned until next year 2014.
Before court proceedings came to an end, Her Honor wished all members of the Royal St. Christopher and Nevis Police Force and all media houses a Merry Christmas and a prosperous New Year.
However, Police Prosecutor, Inspector Stephen Hector was assigned some ‘homework’ by the Magistrate during the Christmas break. His homework is to ensure that all long pending matters be brought before the court in a timely manner when court re-convenes in January 2014.
Her Honor drew attention to the matter involving Craig Holliday. She told the Inspector that she would like this matter to be brought forward since the accused has been remanded at Her Majesty’s Prison for over one year. She was of the view that it is unfair for Holliday to be remanded for so long, especially if there is no evidence against him.
Her Honour also told the Inspector that for the New Year 2014, Preliminary Inquires (PI) should be brought forward regularly and not just close to the criminal assizes.
The Inspector assured the court that in the New Year, his team would work on its efficiency to expedite matters brought before the court.
Nevispages spoke to Inspector Stephens Hector to expound on the concerns of Magistrate Clarke, and his plans for the New Year 2014.
The Inspector informed this media house, that some of his main goals for 2014 are to be more efficient and productive in terms of bringing matters more speedily to court for trial. He advises the general public, that things would be in full gear for next year. According to the Inspector he will be assuring that justice is meted out, matters would be called, and the court would be moving at a faster pace.
“If you’re a victim you will get quick justice and if you’re a defendant you will have your day in court”, he said.
In addition, the Inspector Hector highlighted that P.Is would be called on a monthly basis. “Over the years the Prosecution waits until close to the assizes to conduct P.Is. This would no longer take place for the New Year,” said Inspector Stephen Hector.
According to him, his mission for the upcoming year is to expedite matters that have been pending for some time and persons on remand can be guaranteed that their matters would be called for the New Year.
In the New Year the Inspector hopes that the police can command more support from the community not only in helping to detect matters, but overall to help prevent violence and crime. Hector hoped that all citizens become ‘our brother’s keeper’.
Inspector Hector used this opportunity to wish everyone a safe Christmas Season. He reminded the public that court is adjourned until January 7, 2014. However, the work of police officers to ensure the stability of the country must continue. He said this is a warning for those who may want to break the law over the long holiday period. He warned that with the Court closed for Christmas recess, law breakers would now have a longer time incarcerated if they choose to misbehave until court proceedings begins in January 2014.
In closing the Inspector wished all media houses a Merry Christmas and a bright and prosperous New Year. He expressed gratitude to the reporters and members of the community for their continuous support for 2014.