DOMINICA-JUDICIARY-End to war of words between judge and DPP

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ROSEAU, Dominica, Jun 24, CMC – Registrar Ossie Walsh says the recent developments “between The Bar and The Bench which spilled over into the public arena are both unfortunate and regrettable” and that the matter should now be considered closed.
In a statement, Walsh said that the Director of Public Prosecutions Evalina Baptiste “offered an apology regarding her statement to the press which Her Ladyship Justice Charles-Clarke accepted” and that “this matter, for all intents and purpose is now considered close”.
Last Friday, the Office of the DPP condemned statements made by the judge about its performance saying she should “refrain from usurping the role of the Director of Public Prosecutions as she cannot be both judge and DPP”.
Earlier, Justice Victoria Charles-Clarke had chastised the DPP’s office after the court was unable to conduct a scheduled trial.
The trial of Daniel Elton Bannis had to be postponed due to the absence of the leading prosecutor, who was reportedly ill. Bannis has been on remand at the State Prison since 2013 for the murder of 74-year-old Julius Joseph.
The judge, who expressed her disappointment at the matter, told the DPP that it was “making a mockery of the court system” and also called on the DPP’s Office to take a more serious approach to the work that has to be done.
But in a statement, the DPP office said it wanted to “correct the misinformation” indicating that while it “is true that some matters have not been able to proceed to trial but this is not as a result of the Office being tardy”.
In his statement late Friday, the Registrar said that the court “will continue to jealously guard and safeguard at all times its integrity and purpose as it continues to administer impartially justice for all in its overall quest to uphold the Administration of Justice in the Commonwealth of Dominica”.

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