Arley Gill blasts Caricom and CSME

Former Senator in the Tillman Thomas-led National Democratic Congress (NDC) Government, Arley Gill holds the view that efforts to unite the Caribbean region are not working.

Gill, an attorney-at-law by profession, expressed the view while making a bail application before Chief Magistrate, Her Honour Tamara Gill last week Thursday on behalf of Vincentian National Vincent Orlando Spencer who was charged by local police with possession and trafficking of a cocaine, and conspiracy.

Spencer is jointly charged with Desmond Penny of Beaulieu, St. George’s in connection with the discovery of 192 grams of cocaine with a street value of $19,000.00 that was contained in a box that came in from Trinidad on board a local schooner two weeks ago.

Gill’s remarks about the failings of CARICOM and CSME came in reaction to the Police Prosecution’s objection to bail.

He charged that once someone is a non-national and brought before the court on criminal charges, the prosecution will always object to bail.

He believes that since this is the position adopted by State Prosecutors then the talk about Caricom and the Caribbean Single Market and Economy will not go anywhere.

“He is a Vincentian National with children here, and living here,” Gill told the court in reference to Spencer who is a trader and father of two children.

In making specific reference to the case brought against the Vincentian accused, Gill indicated that the police did not catch his client with anything.

He spoke of someone telling the police that the drugs belonged to Spencer and on that basis his clients was arrested and charged.

Gill who is due to take up an appointment in Dominica as a resident Magistrate o June 1 was making reference to the co-defendant in the case, Penny, who claimed that the box in which the cocaine was found was intended for Spencer.

The lawyer referred to Penny who was placed on bail in the sum of $20,000.00 with two sureties as being “a drunk.”

Lead Police Prosecutor at the St. George’s Number One Magistrate’s Court, Inspector Godfrey Victor claimed that Spencer entered the country in February on board the Osprey vessel without the consent of an Immigration Officer with no fixed place of aboard.

The court learnt that the lawmen managed to detain Spencer during a sting operation while he was traveling in a vehicle with another non-national.

Insp. Victor said the investigating Police Officers have not even seen the accused man’s passport.

However, at another court sitting on Monday, Magistrate Gill was informed that Spencer’s attorney, was in possession of the passport.

Like Penny, Spencer was placed on $20,000.00 bail and both men are due back in court on July 22.

Spencer was ordered to report to Central Police Station on the Carenage, St. George’s daily between 6:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m.


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