Tuesday 29 September, 2020

Scott-Mottley blasts men’s SOE detention after court granted them bail

Donna Scott-Mottley

Donna Scott-Mottley

Opposition Spokesperson on Justice, Senator Donna Scott-Mottley, wants the authorities to immediately investigate and resolve an issue involving Remando Kerr and Kevin Miller, two Westmoreland men who were ordered released by the courts, but remain in detention months later, according to media reports.

This, according to Scott-Mottley, is a breach of the men’s constitutional rights.

Reports are that the men have been denied their freedom because the police immediately re-arrested them under the ongoing state of emergency (SOE) in Westmoreland after they were offered bail by the court and their bail bonds were signed.

“The constitutional rights of every citizen must be respected, and it is a dangerous precedent to ignore the decision of the court in any situation.

“Dismissing or ignoring a decision by the bench is especially egregious when the rights and freedom of citizens are threatened,” Scott-Mottley said in a statement on Thursday.

Don Foote, the attorney representing the detained men, was quoted in the media on Thursday saying Kerr was granted bail in July, but was immediately taken back into custody under the SOE.

“To have the men still languishing in custody for months after they were ordered to be released by the court amounts to declaring that the judiciary is toothless and of no consequence,” Scott-Mottley stated.

She said the Government and all agencies must respect the rights of citizens and give due honour to court decisions, as confidence in the rule of law is critical to the country’s democracy.

“It has been months since these men have been detained, and this situation needs to be resolved,” Scott-Mottley insisted.

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