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Adams’ conviction quashed by Court of Appeal Judges

Adams’ conviction quashed by Court of Appeal Judges

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After serving just one year and a half of his 12 year prison sentence for unlawful sexual intercourse, former Chemistry lecturer Grantley Adams is now a free man.{{more}}

On Tuesday, November 23, Adams’ conviction and sentence were quashed by judges at the Eastern Caribbean Court of Appeal, after three grounds of appeal submitted by his attorney Kay Bacchus-Browne were upheld.

Adams, a 49-year-old Jamaican national who lectured at the St. Vincent and the Grenadines Community College Division of Arts, Sciences and General Studies, was convicted on Wednesday, May 13, 2009, at the Criminal Assizes.

He was sentenced on May 29 that same year, after he was found guilty of having sex with a girl under the age of 13.

Bacchus-Browne submitted to the court that 18 of the 30 pages of cross-examination were done by the trial judge. She also submitted that the trial judge wrongfully disallowed certain evidence, stating it was hearsay. Bacchus-Browne contended this rendered conviction unsafe.

She also argued that the lawyer for Adams at the time, Arthur Williams, failed to raise the issue of his client’s good character, and noted that there was failure of the trial judge to address the jury on good character. She opined that this impacted the fairness of the trial and resulted in making conviction unsafe.

Speaking to an ecstatic Adams at his Lawyer’s chambers, he said: “Words cannot express how I feel. I give gratitude first of all to God and my mother, who was always there, and also Ms. Bacchus-Browne.”

Adams, who hired Bacchus-Browne first at the trial stage, and before the trial got on the way opted for Arthur Williams, said that was “the biggest mistake” he ever made. He noted that he was not sure that Bacchus-Browne would have taken his case at the appeal stages, after he had ditched her in the beginning.

“I wasn’t sure if she was going to take me back. This just goes to show that there are people who still have a good heart even when you wrong them,” Adams stated.

Lawyer Williams had withdrawn from representing Adams just before the conclusion of the trial case, and as a result of that he was left to address the jury on his own.

He, however, admitted that he lost all faith in the justice system after and during his conviction, and further added that he was not totally confident that his conviction and sentence would be quashed.

“Based on my experience, I lost all hope in the legal system. I felt I was in a place where my neck was on the block ready to be cut off,” he admitted.

All was not lost for Adams. During his incarceration, he played an active role in the Adult Learning Programme, which he mentioned benefited a number of individuals.

Most recently, Adams took part in the Inter Correctional Institutional Table Tennis competition.

More importantly, Adams admitted that prison has helped to renew his faith in God.

“I was drifting away from Him (God) and it was leading to a path of death and I just felt God used the experience of prison so that I can reflect,” he said.

As for immediate plans, Adams said he is listening to the advice of his Lawyer and taking things one step at a time.