Magistrate Asquith Riviere has adjourned a matter involving former Prime Minister Edison James “sine die” (without a date for resumption) and rejected a request from the prosecution to join the matter together with Opposition Leader Lennox Linton in an alleged incitement case brought by the State.
The court has ruled it had no evidence before it against James.
James, who was out of state when the matter against Linton started, was served to appear in court late last year on his return to the island. The prosecution which is headed by Trinidad & Tobago’s lawyer Israel Khan SC then made an application to have James joined with Linton but Gildon Richards, who represented Linton and James, opposed the application.
After receiving submissions from the prosecution and defense, the magistrate ruled that since Dominica does not have legislation for “joiner” he must in the circumstances reject the request from the prosecution.
However, he stated that the prosecution does have other options if they so wish to proceed with the matter.
As a result, prosecuting lawyer Israel Khan SC asked that since the court had ruled that it had no evidence before it against Edison James that his matter should be adjourned “sine die”.
The request was granted by the court. Linton was absent and excused for the hearing but will return to court on Thursday, February 6th, 2020 at 1 pm. The court had also fixed Monday, February 10th at 10 am, Tuesday, February 11th at 1 pm, Thursday, February 13th, at 1 pm, and Friday, February 14th at 9 am to continue the matter against Linton. He is however excused on February 10th because of Parliament and days that Parliament is in session.
Asked if he was surprised at the decision of the Magistrate, Gildon Richards lawyer for the defense, said, “I came to court with an open mind because both sides presented strong submissions as the Learned Magistrate rightly pointed and it was left to him to apply the law as it [applies] to Dominica… which he rightly did.”
“In the meantime, from what I know and from what I have seen, I hope prudence operates in the minds of the prosecution in relation to Mr. James and also Linton in this matter,” Richards stated.