The Eastern Caribbean Court of Appeal is scheduled to visit Grenada to arbitrate on a number of cases in the local judicial system, during the week of January 25-29.
According to Registrar of the Supreme Court of Grenada, Attorney-at-Law, Lisa Telesford, “a bench of about four to five Judges” is expected to preside over the one-week sitting, carded for the No. 1 High Court in St. George’s.
In an interview with THE NEW TODAY last week Tuesday, Telesford revealed that this year’s preliminary list comprises “20 substantive matters, and 12 (other) matters,” which she explained “will come up for status hearing”.
She described “status hearing” as an informal discussion between the Judge, Prosecution and the defendant about the case in which the defendant is allowed to change his or her plea or to continue with a not guilty plea.
The Court Registrar disclosed that out of the 20 substantive matters before the Justices of Appeal, “there are 8 applications, 4 civil appeals and 7 magisterial appeals”.
“…There are no criminal High Court matters listed”, she said, adding that “house breaking and stealing seems to be coming up more than ever in the Magisterial appeal.”
Attorney-at-Law Anslem Clouden also touched on the issue of the upcoming sitting of the Court of Appeal.
He commended the efforts of Minister for Legal Affairs, Elvin Nimrod in getting the Court of Appeal to come back to Grenada, following the cancellation of its February 24-28, 2014 sitting due to government’s failure to meet its obligation to make financial contributions to the Court at the required intervals.
“I think it’s good that we are back on stream now…we can expect regular sittings. Mr. Nimrod has done everything possible and I think we are back to normalcy now,” Clouden said.
Speculation was rife at the time that the former National Democratic Congress (NDC) administration of Tillman Thomas did not pay its dues to the Justices for two years and the current NNP administration was one year in default on payments to the judges.
The Court of Appeal generally sits three times a year in Grenada.
However, the Registrar pointed out that in recent times the Justices have been sitting “twice per year depending on the flow of matters to the Court of Appeal.”
In 2013, the Court of Appeal sat once in Grenada and a number of cases that should have been adjudicated upon were not done and are still on the list for hearing.