BASSETERRE, St. Kitts - IT was the recommendations of two veterans of prosecutorial knowledge that led the Director of Public Prosecutions, Valston Graham, to discontinue the criminal case brought by St. Kitts-Nevis Labour Party’s Chairman Dr. Terrance Drew against People’s Action Movement’s Euegene Hamilton.
News broke on Tuesday (Apr. 26) that the case was discontinued due to the lack of substantial evidence being brought by Dr. Drew in the case.
In an invited comment, the DPP explained that after taking over the prosecution of the matter, Queen's Counsel Delano Bart, the lawyer for Dr. Drew, provided him with the evidence upon which the case was founded.
The DPP stated that the QC wrote requesting that “consideration be given independent conduct of the prosecution from my office”.
He also stated that it was against that backdrop the prosecution team sought and received feedback that led to the matter being discontinued.
“Along those lines, I decided and sought the opinion of two independent criminal prosecutors - one in the person of Dr. Henry Browne, Queen’s Counsel, and the other in Oris Sullivan, the Director of Public Prosecutions of Montserrat” the DPP added.
Acknowledging that the opinions of Dr. Browne and Sullivan were unknown to each other, a determination was made based on a review of the law and the evidence.
“I came to the conclusion that the charge of Bribery and the charge of Treating against Mr. Hamilton had no realistic prospect of success. In that regard, I discontinued the matter before the Magistrate,” he noted.
The DPP further explained that each prosecutor must assess a case based on two grounds: “Is there a realistic prospect of success and is it in the public’s interest that the matter should be prosecuted?”
It was noted that there are no grounds that the decision could be appealed, but the DPP stated in his comments that his decision is always open to judicial review.