BASSETERRE, ST KITTS, NOVEMBER 17th, 2022: The criminal matter, COP v Larry Vaughn.
The prosecution of Criminal matters is guided by a two staged test. The first being whether there is sufficient evidence to meet the charge and the second being whether it is in the public’s interest to take the matter to trial. Upon proper reflection, there are certain matters that are discontinued in the interest of justice because it is not within the public’s interest to prosecute.
The prosecution is under an obligation to continually review all matters whether charged or prior to charge. Once an individual has been charged there is still an ongoing obligation to consider whether it is in the public’s interest to continue. Where the DPP determines that a matter should not be continued, he or she is duty bound to discontinue the case.
Criminal matters are not discontinued on the whims and fancies of either victims or defendants nor are they continued or discontinued to further political vendettas. The criminal law, nor law enforcement, should be used to further political ends. The Director of Public Prosecutions is not influenced by any political narrative. As long as it is in the public’s interest to prosecute or to discontinue a prosecution, such a discretion will be exercised accordingly. It does not matter who the individual is. That is not a factor in the decision-making process.
A letter was sent to the former Director of Public Prosecutions, Mr. Valston Graham by Mr. Vaughn’s Attorney, requesting that the matter be reviewed. I am aware that it was the intention of the then Director to discontinue the matter. However, owing to administrative changes the discontinuance was delayed. In recent weeks the office went through a significant transitional period during which there were many matters of which I had to apprise myself. On a personal review of Mr. Vaughn’s matter, I have concluded that the matter should be discontinued. No social media post has any bearing on my discontinuance.
“The wheels of Justice turn slowly at times but grind exceedingly fine.”
Director of Public Prosecutions (Ag.)
November 17th, 2022
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