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Spencer not guilty

Spencer not guilty

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Now that he is free, Orlando Spencer is thinking about going abroad for a while.{{more}}

Following a voir-dire hearing on Tuesday, February 14, at the High Court, Spencer’s lawyer, Jomo Thomas successfully argued that a police statement, which was obtained by the police from his client, was done so under oppression.

Spencer was sentenced to 10 years imprisonment on March 2, 2010, after a nine member jury found him guilty of robbing Western Union Money Transfer and stealing over EC$12,300, US$839 and cheques amounting to EC$600 on January 15, 2008.

In 2011, he successfully appealed his case and his sentence was quashed by the Court of Appeal. A re-trial was ordered in the matter.

At the commencement of the re-trial, Thomas, appearing before Justice Wesley James, argued about whether a caution statement the police took from his client should be submitted into evidence.

“My client was beaten and the statement was obtained under oppression. He was subjected to extensive beatings and threatened…,” Thomas told SEARCHLIGHT shortly after Spencer’s acquittal.

He explained that his task was to put the prosecution’s case to proof and noted that they “came up short.”

“Once I examined officers who obtained the statement, I knew the judge would have agreed,” Thomas added.

Justice James agreed with Thomas’ submission and ordered that the statement should not be allowed into evidence.

After the judge’s decision, the prosecution, led by crown counsel Colin John, decided not to offer any further evidence in the matter.

The jury was then directed to return a not guilty verdict.

An elated Spencer told SEARCHLIGHT that he always knew freedom was in sight and just never gave up.

“I always know I would been freed of this…,” the 30-year-old Greiggs resident said.

The father of four thanked his lawyer for doing a great job with his case.

“I thank the Lord I am free and I thank my lawyer for doing a good job,” he added.

Spencer was just one of four persons charged in connection with the same robbery.

In February 2009, Grenadian John Raymond was sentenced to seven years imprisonment. Vincentian Aaron Francois was given a five-year custodial sentence for his involvement.

The lone female in the matter, Sabrina Phillips, who was 18 at the time, received a three-year suspended prison sentence.

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