Justice is Coming!

If one really wishes to know how justice is administered in a country, one does not question the policemen, the lawyers, the judges, or the protected members of the middle class. One goes to the unprotected–those, precisely, who need the law’s protection most!–and listens to their testimony.       

-James Baldwin

The crime situation affecting Barbados is a cause for concern. In 2019 Barbados registered 49 murders based on the official report. Clearly there has been a seismic shift in the social fabric of the society. The blogmaster is onboard with pressuring government and the police to efficiently enforce laws without compromise to create a culture of discipline in our little society. However, there is urgent remedial action needed to arrest the systemic matters on the opposite side of enforcement.

Recently the blogmaster as he parked the jalopy a youngster – found out he was 19 years old later in conversation – requested the opportunity to wash the vehicle. According to him, he had not eaten for the day. A conversation ensued – he attended St. George Secondary School, left in 4th Form without a single CXC. He tried to secure – unsuccessfully – a job as a gas attendant. He lived with an aunt and uncle because his parents showed no interest in his upbringing, no supervision while at school, he was left to do as he will. The result…

The blogmaster shared the story because at the root of many of our problems is the lack of parental care. A wholesome society is the aggregate of stable family units first and foremost. We live in a time where ceding our obligations to the Commissioner of Police of Attorney General is par for the course.

We need efficient enforcement of our laws by the police to ensure justice is delivered AND we need our Courts to deliver justice to respect the maxim, justice delayed is justice denied. The case load in the Barbados Courts has been rising in recent years to prompt Attorney General Dale Marshall to opine words to the effect – the system was about to crash under its weight. Successive governments have been unable to clear the backlog – even the appointment of a Chief Justice from ‘outside’ and talk about alternative dispute resolution have failed to arrest the issue.

The following article in the press was drawn to the attention of the blogmaster.

Bid to cut backlog of murder cases

HEATHER-LYNN EVANSON, ​heatherlynevanson@nationnews.com

Added 07 January 2020


Justice Carlisle Greaves (FILE)

All eighty-four murder accused, some with cases as old as ten years, will have their day in court this year.

In addition, with 54 matters awaiting sentencing, the new Assizes system will see the last Friday of each month dedicated to those decisions, with the intention of reducing that backlog by the end of February.

The new system was rolled out by Justice Carlisle Greaves yesterday as he joined four other judges for the historic sitting of five High Courts to hear the Criminal Assizes.

Justice Greaves, who will preside over Supreme Court No 3, joins Justices Randall Worrell who sits in Supreme Court 2, Laurie-Ann Smith-Bovell in No 4, Christopher Birch in No. 5A and Pamela Beckles who presides over Court No. 5. (HLE)

Subscribe now to our eNATION edition for the full story.

We have seen several attempts to deal with issues in the Courts. A country that aspires to respect the rights of actors living and operating therein must honour the principles of justice. We will have to wait to review later in the year.

When Justice Blinked for 10 Rh Years

One definition of a symptom is defined as a sign of the existence of something, especially of an undesirable situation. In the last 72 hours this blogmaster found a more lucid meaning for the word. A man that stole a bag and contents including $1,000 cash with a total value of $9,230.30 on the 27 March 2009 – as a result of the act he spent 10 years on remand at Her Majesty’s pleasure.

This story immediately evoked embarrassment in the mind of the blogmaster. It ranks up there with the time raw sewage spewied onto one of our most popular streets on the South Coast.

Barbados Underground has posted voluminously about the dysfunction that defines the Barbados Judiciary. If you are in doubt click on the link at the top of this page – File Complaints Against Lawyers.

Successive governments have paid lip service to the problem. There was great hope when outsider Marston Gibson was recruited to fill the post of Chief Justice. However, without the financial support and the will to penetrate an entrenched culture his job was never going to be easy. Some also question his competence.

Recently Attorney General Dale Marshall announced that the government is in the process of recruiting  additional judges to help with improving how justice is dispensed in Barbados. It is interesting to quote Marshall explaining why the search for new judges is being advertised outside of Barbados :-

… to attract the highest calibre of individual to the Bench…I have been a lawyer for almost 30 years and there have been days when I would wake up one day and see in the paper that John Brown is appointed to the Bench. There was no advertisement…None of these were transparent arrangements, but any vacancy for judge in our judiciary, whether High Court or Court of Appeal, will be advertised in Barbados, in the Caribbean, in Caricom, in the Commonwealth, as far as Australia; everywhere in the Commonwealth…

Dale Marshall, Attorney General

The drive to recruit judges from outside of Barbados is interesting because of the huge number of locally trained lawyers educated at great expense to taxpayers.

Winston Adolphus Agard

Winston Agard

How can an educated people go about its daily business if the majority of the population- including those responsible- are not motivated to feel and express outrage at what occurred to Winston Adolphus Agard?

Attorney General Dale Marshall issued a sympathetic statement on the Agard matter as he is politically obligated to do. The question we have to ask is how many more define the revised definition of symptom? How many more human beings are sitting at Dodds prison on remand- forgotten by the system?

Screenshot 2019-06-08 at 07.49.24

Floyd Downes

Barbadians everywhere thank prison warder Floyd Downes for his civic minded act. It is reported he whispered to court officials including Justice Randall Worrell about the horrific miscarriage of Justice Agard was being made to suffer by the Barbados justice system.

Why, why, why so long? How many more?

This blogmaster urges AG Dale Marshall to direct Superintendent of Prisons John Nurse with immediate effect to audit all inmates on remand at the Dodds prison and report findings. The information that will be of interest is the length of time those on remand. We have to address the symptoms until a more incisive cure can be implemented whenever that may occur.

The Jeff Cumberbatch Column – Odd Usages and Access to Justice

For those few souls who take the time to read my weekly musings, I should apologize for my intermittent absences during the past two months or so. It is that time of the year when the life of a university lecturer is consumed with the reading and assessment of supervised research projects, mid term assignments, the completion of courses and preparation for end of semester examinations. When these are supplemented by attendances at obligatory meetings, the preparation of workshop presentations, the composition of other writings, and of sundry addresses to gatherings, it leaves one but little time only to compose a column of the desired quality within a given deadline. Hence the absence of a contribution in this space last week and two weeks prior.

Today’s contribution was assisted in some regard by the invitation to deliver an address on access to justice in the region to the partners of a prominent Toronto law firm visiting Barbados for their annual retreat.

Before I recount my thoughts on that area, however, I must make mention of two matters in the local press that aroused my interest in relatively recent days. The first is the report of an upcoming court martial by the Barbados Defence Force in which the rank is charged, inter alia, with the offence that he “communicated with the enemy.” I am almost certain that there may be such an offence, but I am still in wonder as to who or what constitutes an enemy of Barbados and why and what would a soldier be communicating with and to such an entity. There has been no further clarification up to the time of writing this. Are we no longer “friends of all, satellites of none” as to we so proudly boasted on attaining sovereign statehood in 1966?

The second item is from a radio advertisement that I overheard during the past week. I am not au courant with the styles of address of peerage and nobility, but it did strike me as amiss that the mother of the Honourable Prime Minister should be referred to as “Amor, Lady Mottley”.

On further researching the issue, I learnt thatthe wife of the holder of a [British] knighthood is referred to by the courtesy title “”Lady (husband’s surname)” i.e. Lady Smith. Using Lady before their first name would be incorrect as that is the style for women holding a peerage courtesy title such as the daughters of high-ranking peers”.

Further, according to one source, In the United Kingdom, the style “Lady Mary Smith” indicates that a woman is a holder of a peerage courtesy title in her own right, and is considered incorrect usage by the wife of a knight. In New Zealand’s more relaxed society, however, as there is no system of hereditary peerages, this convention is not always observed and the following styles may be used on occasions where the holder of the courtesy title considers it to be appropriate:

  • Lady Mary OR Lady Mary Smith.

If a knight divorces and remarries, the current and former wife (or wives) who retains their current and former husband’s surname is/are entitled to use the courtesy title of “Lady”. There may be, therefore, several “Lady Smiths”. In those situations where there is more than one former wife living and entitled to use the courtesy title, a forename may be used; e.g.

  • Mary, Lady Smith.

According to this, Sir Elliott’s wife should be properly referred to as “Lady Mottley”. The honorific “Amor, Lady Mottley” would be correct only in a circumstance where the couple is divorced or the marriage has been dissolved by death as in the arguably correct appellation last week of Yvonne, Lady Gollop, the widow of Sir Fred, at the renaming of Nation House. It would appear that the currently running advertisement is therefore guilty of incorrect usage. These things do matter to some and, indeed, may be conveying an unintended message!

As for the presentation on access to justice, I first made reference to the constitutional guarantee to be found in section 18 (8) of the supreme law, perhaps as much honoured these days in the breach as in the observance, to the effect that

Any court or other tribunal prescribed by law for the determination of the existence or extent of any civil right or obligation shall be established by law and shall be independent and impartial; and where proceedings for such a determination are instituted by any person before such court or other tribunal, the case shall be given a fair hearing within a reasonable time”.

I also noted the injunction to the citizenry of former Prime Minister and now National Hero, the Right Excellent Errol Barrow, that if they were seeking justice, they should keep far from Coleridge Street (then the site of the courts). There is more truth to this injunction that might first appear even though I sense that Mr Barrow spoke with his tongue firmly fixed in cheek. First, while it may be a desirable incident of the application of the law, doing justice is subsidiary in the deliberations of the court. Second, the court trial is not by any means the sole mode of obtaining a desired justice solution, either in the strict sense; given the parallel existence of other informal and less formal institutions, such as a tribunal, commission, the Ombudsman or alternative dispute resolution mechanisms or even the socio-cultural institution of leaning on the influence of one’s MP or priest to secure a benefit or entitlement. Of course, it would be difficult to convince lawyers and even law students of the cogency of this, given their interest, as one writer has put it, in maintaining jurisdiction over the problems that people experience. Such jurisdiction is the bread and butter of the profession and their very raison d’être.

To Rebecca Sandfour, in an article entitled “Access to What?” the central issue is to identify the true nature of the problem. She writes, If the problem is people’s unmet legal needs, the solution is more legal services. If the problem is unresolved justice problems, a wider range of options opens up.

In my view, the latter more accurately reflects the current concerns of individuals than the former. And while there may be no paucity of legal services available in Barbados, we should rather concentrate our energies on the various modes of resolution of justice problems such as the alternative methods of resolving disputes surrounding eviction, debt collection, domestic violence, access to benefits, custody and maintenance of children, property issues, employment issues, and legal services complaints. Our problem may not be so much access to justice, but the timeliness of ogtaining it.This is a project worthy of pursuit by the purveyors of justice education in the region.


Time to Modernize Court System

Judicial Impact Assessment (JIA) is a process whereby the government can anticipate the likely cost of implementing a legislation through the courts and help deliver timely justice to litigants. Litigation demand depends on a variety of factors most of which are not factored in the making of laws. This results in the court system being left with little or no extra resources to cope with additional cases generated by new laws… The Hindu (Judicial impact assessment and timely delivery of justice)

One of the pillar issues of the Barbados Underground through the years has been to focus on a dysfunctional Barbados Judicial System.  It is a fact that timely delivery of justice in the local court system has been compromised because of many factors detailed in the Tales of the Courts.

Fast forward to the present, we have an embarrassing situation where the delivery of justice of the Barbados Supreme Court has been negatively affected because the ‘relatively’ new building is deemed to be a threat to the health of the occupants and has had to be closed for maintenance. The result is that the court system threatens to crash under its own weight- to borrow words from newly installed Attorney General Dale Marshall- as cases have had to be tried using alternative arrangements. Not to forget the ancillary services that form part of the delivery of court services that have to be arranged for as well.

Central to maintaining an orderly society is to ensure we are able to efficiently manage a judicial system that is made relevant. The inability of successive governments to ensure timely delivery of justice by providing adequate oversight has been the biggest challenge. While we are being overwhelmed by basic issues related to occupational health and safety of court buildings, misplaced files, incompetent judicial officers and the like- modern court systems in more enlightened jurisdictions are being planned.

A new flagship court specifically designed to tackle cybercrime, fraud, and economic crime will reinforce the UK’s reputation as a world-leading legal centre, the Lord Chancellor will announce tonight (Wednesday 4 July).

The following article is reproduced to be used as a benchmark to what is required if we are to align with real world demands of the legal system. It is noteworthy how technology will be integrated in the delivery of justice to manage:

  •  case files and applications to the court e.g. apply for divorce,
  • small money claims
  • apply for probate
  • create strategic linkage with the transportation sector to resolve cases.
  • deal with minor (nuisance cases) online

Read the full article (thanks to Senator Caswell Franklyn for sharing)

World-class fraud and cybercrime court approved for london’s fleetbank house site

A new flagship court specifically designed to tackle cybercrime, fraud, and economic crime will reinforce the UK’s reputation as a world-leading legal centre, the Lord Chancellor will announce tonight (Wednesday 4 July).

  • A new flagship 18 courtroom legal centre providing world-class legal services in the heart of London given go-ahead
  • To be built on the site of Fleetbank House, the court will reinforce the UK’s position as a global legal hub

Developed in partnership with the City of London Corporation and the judiciary, the cutting edge, purpose-built court, which will also deal with business and property work as well as civil cases, will hold 18 modern courtrooms and replace the ageing civil court, Mayor’s and City of London County Court, and City of London Magistrates’ Court. Also included in the court will be a new City of London police station.

Mute-Volume Down+Volume Up100%

The timeline slider below uses WAI ARIA. Please use the documentation for your screen reader to find out more.


A feasibility study to look at whether a court might be built was announced last October, and now the plan has been given the go-ahead. Speaking to members of the senior judiciary at the Mansion House this evening [4 July], the Lord Chancellor, alongside the Lord Mayor, Charles Bowman, and Lord Chief Justice, will reveal that the court will be built on the site of Fleetbank House in the heart of the City.

English law is currently used in 40% of all global corporate arbitrations, and more than 200 foreign law firms currently have offices in the UK. Revenue generated by legal activities in the UK was worth £31.5bn in 2016, and the top 100 UK law firms generated over £22bn in 2016/17. Built next to some of the world’s leading legal, business and technology firms in the heart of legal London, this court will be a sign to the world that the UK remains the global centre for law and finance.

Lord Chancellor David Gauke said:

The flag of English law is flown in countries across the globe, and London already leads the way as the best place to do business and resolve disputes.

This state-of-the-art court is a further message to the world that Britain both prizes business and stands ready to deal with the changing nature of 21st century crime.

The City of London is the world’s financial centre, hosting an unparalleled cluster of financial, professional, and business services. The City’s legal services offer, clustered around the Temples in the West of the Square Mile, which plays host to more than 17,000 solicitors, is a vibrant centre for international law firms serving their clients across the world.

Commenting on the announcement Policy Chairman of the City of London Corporation Catherine McGuinness said:

This is a hugely significant step in this project that will give the Square Mile its second iconic courthouse after the Old Bailey.

Our rule of law is one of the many reasons why London is the world’s most innovative, dynamic, and international financial centre, and this new court will add to our many existing strengths.

I’m particularly pleased that this court will have a focus on the legal issues of the future, such as fraud, economic crime, and cyber-crime.

Fleet Street may historically be known for hosting newspapers, but I believe with this iconic project it will be seen as a world leading centre for legal services and justice for decades to come.

The Government is investing £1 billion in reforming and modernising courts and tribunals, which has already delivered:

  • A fully paperless system in conjunction with Transport for London – which means thousands of cases involving fare evasion are dealt with more swiftly and effectively.
  • An online system which enables court staff to prepare case files and access them digitally in a courtroom during a hearing – saving 68 million pages of paper.
  • The ability for those convicted of minor motoring offences to make their initial plea online. Some 1500 pleas are dealt with online every week. Court staff and the police automatically receive the completed online plea form as soon as the defendant has submitted it, reducing delays.

In the civil courts people can now:

  • Make a small money claim online – with over 3,000 claims issued in the first month, cases moving through more quickly, and user satisfaction over 80% during the pre-launch pilot.
  • Apply for a divorce online – which has cut errors in application forms from 40% to less than 1%, saving people time and trouble during a traumatic time.
  • Apply for probate online – which has also cut errors, sped up the process, and has a satisfaction rate of more than 90%.

Notes to editors:

  • The timeline for building the new court is subject to finalising funding arrangements and securing planning permission. It is expected to be completed in 2025.
  • The proposal for a new court was announced last October by the City of London Corporation, and work on feasibility has now concluded and a location for the court has been set. Funding will be provided by the City of London Corporation and HMCTS.
  • The court will replace the civil court, Mayor’s and City of London County Court, and City of London Magistrates’ Court, which are owned by the City Corporation and which HMCTS operate. |* The Employment Appeal Tribunal that is currently at Fleetbank House will move to the Rolls Building.
  • The City of London Corporation is the governing body of the Square Mile dedicated to a vibrant and thriving City, supporting a diverse and sustainable London within a globally-successful UK.


There is some irony that the new president  Hon. Justice Saunders of the Caribbean Court of Justice was sworn in at the HoGs conference in Montego Bay yesterday – a court that has been strident in its observations of the failings of the local court to deliver timely decisions. Prime Minister Mia Mottley attending her first HoGs lauded the establishment of the CCJ as an example of how regional countries can leverage regional institutions to effective manage our affairs. Perhaps the time has come…

DPP Charles Leacock Found Guilty

We give credit to Barbados Today for highlighting this grave injustice meted out to Kobia Jamal Robinson by Director of Public Prosecutions Charles Leacock. The idea that a person charged with a crime in Barbados has to wait for three years to have their case heard is embarrassing and wrong.  The fact others have had to be on remand for longer than three years confirms what BU has been commenting for several years – see Tales from the Courts.

We have two issues the authorities must resolve with dispatch:

  • A heavy backlog of cases in the Barbados Courts
  • A Director of Public Prosecutions who is unable to ready cases for trial in a timely manner despite the backlog of cases

A reminder to Leacock – JUSTICE delayed is JUSTICE denied!


From Magistrate to Judge, You be the Judge

Name of the author withheld by BU
Madam Justice Pamela Beckles former post vacant left vacant

Madam Justice Pamela Beckles former post vacant left vacant

I guess I am very lucky and not on remand but can anyone tell me what is the point of promoting a magistrate to a judge and not having a magistrate appointed to replace the previous one.   Admittedly mine is a civil matter but it has been adjourned from last October to January and from then no magistrate.  Where is the common sense in that ?    So we have no Chief Magistrate who could fill in either.

Something is very wrong here.

The Caribbean Court of Justice – A Cautionary Legal Tale

It is most unusual and judicially improper for a Court to publish its judgment in the public media before it has been delivered and communicated to the litigants and their legal representatives. This is what the Caribbean Court of Justice did in the Caribbean Court of Justice Civil Appeal Case No. BBCV2014/002 – Systems Sales Limited v. Arlette O. Browne-Oxley and Sonja Patsena Suttle – a procedure that has never occurred in the Supreme Court of Barbados since our independence.

The Judgment which on the face of it reads “The Judgment” of Justices Wit, Hayton and Anderson which was delivered by The Honourable Mr. Justice Hayton on the 25th day of November 2014 was never read nor delivered to the parties or their Attorneys-at-Law on the 25th November 2014. The Attorneys-at-Law for the Applicant received an electronic copy of the Judgment on the 26th November 2014 and the signed hard copy was received by the Applicant from the sub-Registry of the Court (the Barbados Supreme Court Registry) on the 4th December 2014. Strangely enough, a media release number 28-2014 dated the 25th November 2014 was issued by the Court to the media and published on that same day. It is to be noted that the “media release” the electronic copy and the signed hard copy all bear the date 25th November 2014 even though they are not identical documents. What has therefore resulted is that the Court has published three different official judgments on the same case.

Read full article

Relevant Links:

Continue reading

Tales from the Courts – No Excuses Says Former Judge XX

Justice delayed is justice denied [William Penn]

For several years BU has been ridiculed by many for making the observation Barbados law courts are stymied by a backlog of cases and unable to dispense justice in a timely manner.  BU is on record advocating that QCs function as deputy judges to help with building efficiency in the courts.

The Barbados Bar Association (BA) in a report carried in the local media titled Go with acting judges confirms BU’s message. The article quotes the BA wanting more judges to help reduce the backload and is calling for government to increase filing and application fees both in the Supreme Court and the Registration Department. The BA’s grievances were addressed in a letter directed to Minister of Finance Chris Sinckler. The letter also made the point the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) had on several occasions reprimanded both the Court of Appeal and the High Court for the unacceptable amount of time it took for cases to be tried and judgements given’. Does any of this looks familiar?

BU states for the record we are against the BA’s recommendation to increase filing and application fees. At a time of unprecedented financial crisis in Barbados such a move is bound to reduce access to justice by the poor, tipping the scale further in favour of the well off. What manner of people are to want to implement a pricing system to hinder ordinary citizens access to justice?

Are we about selling justice now?

Tales from the Courts – Sir Marston Gibson a FAILURE XIX

It was with more than passing interest that BU read the Nation article of 15 January 2014 entitled SLOW JUDGEMENTS HEAVILY CRITICIZED.

It is somewhat daunting to note that the Nation has only now espoused this cause as the result of cross-party agreement in the House led by former attorney general, Dale Marshall and supported by the PM and the present attorney general. This, after all, is an issue that BU – Tales from the Courts – has been resolute in airing for some years now and it appears that it is only now that a leading economist has publicly pointed out the obvious, that the demise of the justice system is almost completely responsible for the fall off and withdrawal of off-shore and foreign investment, that it now has been raised. Although, to be fair, last year in Toronto, the PM did serve notice that the justice system and courts had to be sorted out. But still his warning appears to have fallen in deaf ears and he himself has not done anything since.

Continue reading

An Ex-Cop’s View of Darwin Dottin

Wade Gibbons

Wade Gibbons

The following was extracted from Wade Gibbons’ Facebook Page. He is a reporter for Barbados Today and is a former policeman.

Some excellent administrative and proactive moves by acting Commissioner of Police Tyrone Griffith. He is going to make a terrific leader of the RBPF, a position he should have held a long time ago.

The phones of innocent law-abiding Barbadians could not have been tapped by Dimwit Dottin without the knowledge and participation of some in the Special Branch which Dottin once headed. It was an ongoing criminal act by Dottin, deserving of imprisonment and not pension, and as such the hierarchy of that specialised department should have squealed on the thug and not be drawn into his criminality. No commissioner of police – an incompetent one at that – can compel a police officer to commit a crime.

If the force is to be purged of Dottin’s criminal presence, then of necessity some house-cleaning has to be done in departments such as the Special Branch. One transferred from that department is as close to me as a brother and I love him as such but wrong is wrong. Now that the Dottin cancer has been removed the organs of the body should gradually start to heal and return to a state of normalcy. Full praise to Commissioner Griffith. May God guide your every move.

Tales from the Courts – Madam Justice Cornelius Delivers on the Dr. Richard Ishmael v QEH Matter, FINALLY Part XIV

Madam Justice Cornelius

Madam Justice Cornelius

We see the ruling on Dr Ishmael has at last been given by the courts. The Nation has published the decision which is highly unflattering to the MoH and the QEH. BU refers readers to the recent Tales From The Courts, where some of the issues discussed are similar and pertinent to this edition. The decision on this particular matter was reserved by Madam Justice Cornelius since 30 March 2011, a period of 818 days, or 2 years 2 months and 26 days. INEXCUSABLE!!!

It is not for the judge to take into consideration that Dr Ishmael is back at the QEH. The judge’s SOLE concern, other than the constitutional rights of the litigants, ought to have been the fact that there was a matter before her that might seriously, fatally and detrimentally affect the health of patients at the QEH. Indeed, this might be considered a matter affecting public policy and therefore to be accorded the urgency of any public policy matter. Instead, Madam Justice Cornelius took almost 2.25 YEARS to provide a judgement that ought to have been produced in a maximum, given the potential prejudice that delay would cause, of 60 days.

Thus, has Madam Justice Cornelius BETRAYED the trust and best interests of the people of Barbados and for that she deserves to be instantly suspended pending the outcome of an enquiry to dismiss her. Additionally, judges are expected to render decisions within 60 days, with an outside limit of 90 days for complex cases. Regardless of the circumstances between Dr Ishmael and the QEH, Madam Justice Cornelius has egregiously and improperly breached the Constitution.

Continue reading

Police Investigation Involving High Ranking Officers Questioned

Updated 05 September 2013
Commissioner of Police Darwin Dottin

Commissioner of Police Darwin Dottin

Barbados Today published the story that former COP has formally handed over to COP Griffith and withdrawn from court matter against the Police Service Commission.  Included in the report is alleged authorization of wiretapping by Dottin.

Read report: Darwin Dottin officially hands over reins of police force

  • Letter sent to Commissioner Darwin Dottin by the Police Service Commissionparts I,II

Continue reading

Commissioner Darwin Dottin Leaves…

Commissioner of Police Darwin Dottin

Commissioner of Police Darwin Dottin

News reaching BU indicates that Commissioner Darwin Dottin has been sent on administrative leave. Given the recent development that a Deputy Commissioner was being selected without the input from Dottin provided a clue that sanction against Dottin was in the offing. A few weeks ago we also learned that Dottin had to return from vacation because his recommendation of the person to act while he was on leave was declined by the Public Service Commission.

Stay tuned!

Compensation Fund: Another Screw-up By the Barbados Bar Association

Barry Gale QC, President of the BA

Barry Gale QC, President of the BA

BU has been able to access the audited financial report of the Bar Association (BA) relative to the Compensation Fund. BU notes that the fund holds in excess of $2 million. The authority for the Fund is to be found at Part VIII of the Legal Professions Act Cap. 370A of the Laws of Barbados.

Briefly, the Act states:

  1. The Fund is the property of the BA and must be paid into a separate bank account to the credit of the BA to be known as “the Attorneys-at-law Compensation Fund”.
  1. Every attorney-at-law is required, when a Practicing Certificate is issued to him, to pay to the Registrar his/her annual contribution to the Fund, without which no Practicing Certificate will be issued.
  1. “50. (1) Where it is proved to the satisfaction of the Bar Association that any person has sustained loss in consequence of dishonesty on the part of an attorney-at-law or any clerk or servant of an attorney-at-law in connection with that attorney-at-law’s practice as an attorney-at-law or in connection with any trust of which that attorney-at-law is a trustee, then, subject to the provisions of this section, the Association may, if it thinks fit, make a grant to that person out of the Fund for the purpose of relieving or mitigating that loss.”

A few points to ponder from the reading of the posted financials.

Continue reading

Update: Leroy Parris v BLP, Nation and Barbados Advocate

Marston Gibson, Chief Justice of Barbados Designate

Marston Gibson, Chief Justice

In the interest of sharing all information received about any matters which BU has reported on, we have been advised and updated on the issue of the Parris v BLP and Nation and Barbados Advocate as follows:

Mr Hal Gollop QC filed an action for defamation against the Nation which pre-dates the Parris action. The law firm of Carrington and Sealy acts for the Nation and Mr Vernon Smith QC is acting for Mr Gollop.

The essence of the complaint is that on January 07, 2013, the Nation captured and published the photograph which is the subject of dispute. Reasonable conclusion, the Nation was the author and the holder of copyright of the photograph. The BLP subsequently used the photograph and caption in their campaign. Thus, Mr Gollop has also advanced a claim of conspiracy against the Nation and the BLP.

Continue reading