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Old 28-12-2012, 08:53   #196
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Re: In Prison in St Lucia

I think its fairly self evident that there must be more to this case then we know. I do not believe a murder/manslaughter charge would be brought by the Director of public prosecutions without good reason, not least because DPPs do not in the main attempt cases they are unlikely to win.

We shall have to wait and see what evidence to support the charges, will be brought against him.

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Old 28-12-2012, 08:54   #197
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Re: In Prison in St Lucia

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Originally Posted by boatsail View Post
If I ever go to court, I want GordMay to represent me!
I second that motion.
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Old 28-12-2012, 09:03   #198
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Re: In Prison in St Lucia

Sorry, while the criminal procedure in Martinique and Guadeloupe is based upon the Napoleonic code, the procedure in the Eastern Caribbean is based upon the common law system used throughout the Commonwealth and provides for a final appeal, in limited circumstances, to the Privy Council in England. As in England, St. Lucia has a DPP (a Director of Public Prosecutions) and the onus is on the prosecution in criminal trials. Earlier I had erroneously referred to a grand jury proceeding prior to the indictiment being preferred - in fact, in order to assist in expediting trials that process has been replaced by a "Sufficiency Hearing" before a Justice of the Supreme Court who determines, without the calling of viva voce evidence, whether there is sufficient evidence to merit bringing the matter to trial.

A quick review shows that, in spite of efforts by the Supreme Court to expedite the process, there have been outrageous examples of delays before the DPP brought matters to trial. A recent application by an accused to have his charges dismissed due to delay resulted in a judicial rebuke of the DPP of St. Lucia and, while the charges were not dismissed, the court did order the accused released on bail pending his trial.

The delay to date in this case is hardly noteworthy on charges on murder, so that remedy is likely not yet available here. Nevertheless, he will be entitled to a trial by a jury of his peers (unlike under the Napoleonic Code) and hopefully, after the recent judical rebuke, that trial will occur wtihin a reasonable period of time.

Brad
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Old 28-12-2012, 09:39   #199
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Re: In Prison in St Lucia

"but also if an innocent man has been murdered lets hope a murderer is not set free amongst us cruising the Caribbean." MarkJ


I think it is well established that we don't know the facts of the case and to pass judgment for either party would be unfair. However, if it were the case that the local boarded the cruiser's boat with two accomplices waiting in a dinghy, did the cruiser have the right to defend himself from the alleged threat and use whatever force necessary to repel the alleged attack? It is highly unlikely that the intruders were there for a social visit based upon the facts of the case and with the numerous and recent thefts, robberies, murders and boardings in the Caribbean how would one under attack adjudge the nature and force of his response as reasonable and fair? It is always easy to use "armchair" speculation when attempting to understand what really happened, but the bottom line is whether we have the right to defend ourselves and to what extent? And, should a reasonable person assume that there is parity among all legal systems worldwide and accept this as a given? For those who have travelled extensively outside the U.S. Europe, Canada, Australia and New Zealand(countries with a reputation for respected legal systems) and have encountered legal issues while visiting "Third World countries," there is an immediate awareness of the inability to obtain fair treatment and/or trial, especially if you are not a citizen of the country. What is needed here is surely more information/facts, but if they occurred as stated and the cruiser is innocent, how long would you feel is a reasonable time for incarceration if you were the one being imprisoned?
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Old 28-12-2012, 09:46   #200
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Re: In Prison in St Lucia

Quote:
did the cruiser have the right to defend himself from the alleged threat and use whatever force necessary to repel the alleged attack?
of course he does, but self defense laws limit you to reasonable actions and reasonable-ness is determined by a court.
Quote:
how would one under attack adjudge the nature and force of his response as reasonable and fair?
He has no other way then under the laws of the land he is in, that is one of the things you implicitly accept when you voluntary visit a country

Quote:
For those who have travelled extensively outside the U.S. Europe, Canada, Australia and New Zealand(countries with a reputation for respected legal systems) and have encountered legal issues while visiting "Third World countries," there is an immediate awareness of the inability to obtain fair treatment and/or trial, especially if you are not a citizen of the country
True but St.Lucia has a well developed legal system based on English common law. Its hardly Somalia. Also Western developed nations maintain a strong oversight into trials of their nationals and often in fact they get lenient treatment , ie they are deported rather then jailed. The locals have no such backup.

Quote:
how long would you feel is a reasonable time for incarceration if you were the one being imprisoned?
I gather he is being given bail is that not correct.

In some countries remand time is a big problem. thats true.

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Old 28-12-2012, 09:48   #201
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Re: In Prison in St Lucia

Quote:
... the bottom line is whether we have the right to defend ourselves and to what extent? ...
In St. Lucia - Yes, to a "reasonable" extent.

As per post 183

Excerpted from the Criminal Code of SAINT LUCIA
http://www.rslpf.com/site/criminal%20code%202004.pdf

Reasonable use of force in self-defence
34. A person may use such force as is reasonable in the
circumstances ó
(a) to prevent crime;
(b) to protect himself or herself or another person from injury;
(c) to protect himself or herself or another person (with his or her
authority) from trespass to himself or herself or the other person;
(d) to protect from injury or damage his or her property or property
belonging to another person with that personís authority.

Defence of property, possession of right
35. Subject to the provisions of sections 36 to 46, a person may justify
the use of force for the defence of property or possession or for
overcoming an obstruction to the exercise of any legal right in relation to
such property or possession.

Force to repel trespasser
36. A person in actual possession of a house, land or vessel, or goods,
or any other person authorised by him or her, may use the force reasonable
in the circumstances as is necessary for the purpose of resisting a person
who attempts forcibly and unlawfully to enter such house, land or vessel,
or to take possession of the goods.

Force to remove trespasser
37. A person in actual possession of a house, land or vessel, or any
other person authorised by him or her, may use such force reasonable in
the circumstances as is necessary for removing a person who has
unlawfully entered such house, land, or vessel, and who having been
lawfully requested to depart, refuses to depart.
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Old 28-12-2012, 09:53   #202
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Re: In Prison in St Lucia

That listing of geographical areas (accepted worldwide?) should raise some eyebrows.
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Old 28-12-2012, 10:07   #203
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Re: In Prison in St Lucia

Quote:
Originally Posted by Southern Star View Post
... A quick review shows that, in spite of efforts by the Supreme Court to expedite the process, there have been outrageous examples of delays before the DPP brought matters to trial. A recent application by an accused to have his charges dismissed due to delay resulted in a judicial rebuke of the DPP of St. Lucia and, while the charges were not dismissed, the court did order the accused released on bail pending his trial...
Brad
Further to Bradís excellent report (#198):

DPP MUST ACCOUNT FOR DELAYS | St. Lucia STAR

Joint Statement by Office of the Attorney General and Director of Public Prosecutions on the Verlinda Joseph case | St. Lucia Voice News
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Old 28-12-2012, 10:11   #204
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Re: In Prison in St Lucia


Gord, two excellent articles!
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Old 28-12-2012, 10:19   #205
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Re: In Prison in St Lucia

That word REASONABLE...it's a necessary evil in a civilized world. It's in no way possible for any law to spell out every situation, nor for every situation to fit into the law. That leaves us with words like REASONABLE, and that being determined by (in this case) a victim in the heat of the moment, and then to be judged by the Judicial branch after the fact.

It's a system that allows for some degree of variation in the application of the law...and yes, in the abuse of it as well. Things like mandatory minimum sentences are aimed at limiting the variation, but alas we rely on the judicial system to work...and it does...most of the time.

In Texas I can say for sure this guy would be in the clear (IF what has been said is true) BUT...he isn't in Texas. Given that the guy's embassy is involved, and that the eyes of the world will see this case through (as apposed to Somalia, to use a previous example), I think it's simply a matter of time to see the results.

I'm not taking St Lucia off my list...I'm way more scared of California (JUSSSST kidding...sorta)
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Old 28-12-2012, 10:23   #206
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Re: In Prison in St Lucia

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In Texas I can say for sure this guy would be in the clear (IF what has been said is true) BUT...he isn't in Texas.
True.

"Castle laws" are likely the exception throughout the world..
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Old 28-12-2012, 10:32   #207
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Re: In Prison in St Lucia

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Originally Posted by jackdale View Post
True.

"Castle laws" are likely the exception throughout the world..
Don't misunderstand me, those are abused too. I'm just saying: When in Rome...well, Roman Law rules!
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Old 28-12-2012, 10:38   #208
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Re: In Prison in St Lucia

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Originally Posted by jackdale View Post
True.

"Castle laws" are likely the exception throughout the world..
I take the point that in some places having a right to kill in own personal death zone is accepted as being as ok (and I make no argument with that).....but surely even in those places the legal authorities do slightly more than simply ask the survivor what happened and then take their word for it? (after all, it might be relevant that the dead person lived 20 miles away, had no criminal record and was last seen walking their dog in a park next to the householders minivan - and the dead person also just happened to be 21 with large breasts. and she was found to have broken into the home whilst butt naked ).
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Old 28-12-2012, 11:02   #209
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Re: In Prison in St Lucia

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"Castle laws" are likely the exception throughout the world..
I wouldnt agree, both the english common law and Napoleonic code place a high priority on ones right to self defense and the protection of property. Both having derived from the common problems of Feudal times, when all property was owned by the King.

However many jurisdictions place limitations on that right, They do not allow the use of "unreasonable force" in furtherance of those rights. Equally the person who is teh subject of such intentions generally must display "intent" to do harm. You cannot beat up a debt collector merely because he refused to leave your property without the high possibility that you will be charged with GBH.

Lets say you owe me money, and I climb onto the back of your boat and demand payment, ( I havent damaged anything nor threatened you). Most Castle laws ( where they do apply to boats)restrict your response to non violent behaviour is this case. Pulling a gun for example would most likely get "You" arrested in many jurisdictions.

Most judges or juries would consider the appropriate response in my example to be "why didnt you call the maritime police".

Lets take my example a bit further, The debt collector ( I use the term loosely) continues to refuse to leave, lets say O say" OK stay there, Im going below to sleep" and I do so and lock my hatch. Now if he then attempts force or starts to damage the property , now I am entitled to use far more force, right up to lethal force. Why because most castle doctrines recognise the fact that you have to determine intent, but not how much intent.

However the issue of reasonable response is always a factor, in now-tackling my debt collector now turned burglar , I get the better of him, and he screams I cant swim and yet I throw him over , I now have potentially committed a crime , no more then throwing stoaways overboard is also murder.

Of course many castle doctrines do not have a "stand your ground" provision, ie if you have a way out you have to take it. SOme have a stand your ground provision but limited to your "castle" , ie does not apply elsewhere.

The main feature of English common law has its roots in this comment

“it is ridiculous to suggest that a private citizen, however outraged, may deliberately kill a burglar, simply for being a burglar”,

Ie the mere commission of a crime is not a license to commit a further crime, it is reasonable to detain the burglar, its is also reasonable should one determine the burglar is either violent or threatening or has evidence of being armed, to react with force up to and including lethal force. ( but not to be premeditated in such force)

I fully accept the rules are different in say the US,
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Old 28-12-2012, 12:33   #210
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Re: In Prison in St Lucia

Quote:
Originally Posted by ElGatoGordo View Post
That word REASONABLE...it's a necessary evil in a civilized world. It's in no way possible for any law to spell out every situation, nor for every situation to fit into the law. That leaves us with words like REASONABLE, and that being determined by (in this case) a victim in the heat of the moment, and then to be judged by the Judicial branch after the fact.

It's a system that allows for some degree of variation in the application of the law...and yes, in the abuse of it as well. Things like mandatory minimum sentences are aimed at limiting the variation, but alas we rely on the judicial system to work...and it does...most of the time.

In Texas I can say for sure this guy would be in the clear (IF what has been said is true) BUT...he isn't in Texas. Given that the guy's embassy is involved, and that the eyes of the world will see this case through (as apposed to Somalia, to use a previous example), I think it's simply a matter of time to see the results.

I'm not taking St Lucia off my list...I'm way more scared of California (JUSSSST kidding...sorta)
I belive in Texas you can kill a man if he is in your house with your tv in his hands at 3 am ,dosent matter if he has a knife or not,I think you can,but that would get you in hot water most anywhere else in America...I think these 3rd world places look at it like you have a right to be what ever you want to be (crook) and that no one has the right to kill you for it...true in America also!
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