Regional Response Required to Extradition Requests for Caribbean Nationals
Submitted by Caleb Pilgrim
Re the narrow extradition issue, raised by some bloggers, will you not kindly use your good offices to prevail upon P.M Mottley, Her A.G, and the Barbados Ambassador to CARICOM, that there is need for a comprehensive regional response to all demands to extradite Caribbean nationals?
This issue ought to be seriously debated and resolved by the next CARICOM Heads of Government Meeting. In fact, CARICOM’s model law initiative should already have had among its drafts – if this has not already been done – a draft stipulating that “Notwithstanding any treaty, law, diplomatic request for extradition, to the contrary, no Caribbean national shall be extradited etc, etc, etc”. (I fully understand that this may take another 10 years minimum, as with the CARICOM Administrative Tribunal inaugurated last year, some ten years or more after I first raised the issue).
You may also have to seek some derogation from existing treaty obligations as you seek to exercise your sovereignty in this area.
The Caribbean national, I believe, should as a general rule be tried in his home state, or somewhere else in the Caribbean, especially if there is a genuine fear that he or she cannot receive a fair trial in his/her particular, local jurisdiction, or where there is a substantial threat that the criminal defendant(s) might seek to further torpedo the local justice system.
WE SHOULD NOT OUTSOURCE OUR CRIMINAL PROSECUTIONS TO THE USA or any other state. To do so is unnecessarily shabby, insulting and demeaning.
Also, what exactly lies behind the US decision to prosecute Inniss for the crimes he was charged with (amounting to a mere US $36,000). The jurisdiction in federal, civil court cases, I believe, is US $75,000.
Election results should never constitute a Thieves’ Charter allowing for crimes of opportunity for any stooge or stoolie. But, so long as Caribbean politicians continue empty palaver about “good governance”, while doing their usual sheit, what can we expect?