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100 days suggestion a joke – Pilgrim

Attorney Andrew Pilgrim, QC, has ridiculed as a joke” and “backward thinking”, a recommendation by a fellow criminal lawyer that gun offenders be remanded for at least 100 days before they are considered for bail.

Back in December, then Acting Attorney General Michael Lashley announced he would like the Freundel Stuart administration to consider going the same route as Trinidad and Tobago, in beefing up its firearms legislation.

“This is my personal view. Trinidad has passed a Firearms Act and their Firearms Act speaks to over 100 days on remand before you can apply for bail . . . once you are found with a firearm or committed any offence with a firearm . . . a firearm-related offence, and they have actually passed that legislation,” said Lashley, whose St Philip North constituency was reeling from two gun related deaths at the time.

However in an interview with Barbados TODAY Pilgrim strongly objected to the recommendation.

“They do a lot of things in Trinidad that I don’t want to do. The question is, is it right or is it wrong? You are telling me that a person is charged . . . and you are going to keep them in prison for 100 days automatically? What that means is that you are sentencing them essentially to 100 days before you start their trial and we know in the context of the system that we have here, they are not starting any trial in any damn 100 days, so that’s just a joke,” he asserted.

“It’s backward thinking. It’s saying ‘we can’t manage our backlog, we are not going to get a chance to try these people in a timely fashion so let’s lock [them] up before we try them.’”

He put forward an argument of a 79-year-old man who owns a firearm but forgot to reapply for his gun license and was charged with possession.

“He will have to go up and sit in prison for 100 days even if he is 79, according to what the Acting Attorney General was saying. It just shows a lack of thought, a lack of consideration and taking judicial power away from a judicial officer who can grant bail according to the needs of the society.

“You don’t know the circumstances in which someone gets charged with an offence, we can’t say that we are just going to lock up all of them, that’s just going to the opposite of what our system says — that’s guilty before proven innocent  — and I totally reject any thinking along those lines as archaic and medieval,” Pilgrim said.

8 Responses to 100 days suggestion a joke – Pilgrim

  1. Tête La
    Tête La January 9, 2016 at 6:09 am

    Only a good comedian can make an entire country laugh, so you saying it would got to be a joke from a joker?

  2. Elliott January 9, 2016 at 11:13 am

    If it is in the interest of proper gun control and the safety of the public from the wanton and improper use of guns in the wrong hands then maybe there would be some justification for it. However, having said that, the rights of the individual must also be safeguarded. There must be a proper balance, in my humble opinion.

  3. Ormond Mayers January 9, 2016 at 6:57 pm

    Mr. Pilgrim the Society has to be protected and I am in agreement ith any method use to protect the lives of innocent persons. There are far too many illegal guns on the streets and in the hands of very demonic, evil thugs.

  4. Bobo January 9, 2016 at 9:10 pm

    God bless Andrew Pilgrim– keep up the good work– educating (these jackasses) Bajans of their rights.

  5. zeus January 10, 2016 at 7:31 am

    OK pilly you have criticized the suggestion but I was eagerly the article to read your suggestion about arresting the gun crime problem in Barbados but sadly there was none ….just like every other issue in Barbados too many critics hardly any problem solvers ….or is it easier to criticize than to offer solutions

  6. Noel January 10, 2016 at 11:15 am

    Don’t agree with lawyers often but agree strongly with Mr. Pilgrim’s comments here. We should be protected by our laws not vitimised.

  7. Tony Webster January 10, 2016 at 12:50 pm

    I have never been admitted to The Bar…and I have dis-barred myself many years from those other bars which serve spiritous liquors. So as an un-trained , and ill-qualified legal beagle, I venture to ask of the gentleman of silk, a couple of questions, aspects of which might have been inadvertently overlooked, as published:-
    1: In legislating any penalty within the criminal jurisdiction of the law, does the element of deterrent rightfully apply?
    2: Right here in Barbados, have we experienced any instances where an accused and charged murderer, has committed another murder whilst on bail?
    3. When faced with desperate circumstances, such as a tiger six paces removed…what to do? Offer it ice-cream?

    Obviously, just as a mandatory sentences have come under scrutiny and review, the LAW might not need formal amendment, but judicial/ sentencing guide-lines, might be toughened-up.

    Pray tell, Gentleman of Silk, what might YOU as a “simple citizen” suggest to ameliorate our current horrific state regarding gun crime? You should be much, MUCH better-informed than us plebs out here!

  8. Gerard Boyce January 11, 2016 at 7:00 pm

    I totally disagree with this three months on remand before facing the court. We do not want any jungle laws in our country. A man is innocent until proven guilty and then sentence to whatever punishment that the Magistrate of judge institute. That is the law and it must be applied. What if the man is found not guilty after spending three months in prison on remand? Can he sue the government for unlawful imprisonment? Who would compensate him for this. There are other ways of dealing with the situation, establish a gun court to deal strickly with firearm related matters and manditory imprisoment for unlawful possession of firearms and ammunuition and firearm related offences.


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