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Assizes have ended

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The jurors were definitely the superstars of the day as they came in for high praises from the Director of Public Prosecutions and others for their commitment, cooperation and outstanding work at the close of the Criminal Assizes on Wednesday.{{more}}

Presiding Judge at the Assizes, Frederick Bruce-Lyle commended the jurors for their attitude and approach to the assizes. Bruce-Lyle said that he was overwhelmed with the level of interest shown by the jurors during the four months. “Sometimes when they were dismissed, it was heartening to see that some of them remained to listen to the case that was being tried,” he said.

Justice Bruce-Lyle also expressed his sincere appreciation to the entire High Court staff especially the police officers for going beyond their call of duty to get witnesses for cases, even when the task was daunting at times. The judge also expressed his thanks for the hierarchy of the Royal St Vincent Police Force for being in attendance. “This goes to show that the court and police are not adversaries,” said Bruce-Lyle. He went on to say that it doesn’t mean when he criticizes the police that they are not liked, but only because some procedure was not followed.

The Judge turned his attention to the recent phenomenon of persons in fear of coming to give evidence, which he described as “Something that has arrived and is presenting itself in a real way.” He even referred to one case where a man, after giving evidence in a matter said he knew was a dead man. Bruce-Lyle said that there are cases where witnesses are being threatened before giving evidence in matters, especially murders.

The next Criminal Assizes will commence on June 3 at the High Court. (KW)

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