Bail out

Holder slams court for remanding his drug accused client

Outspoken attorney-at-law Arthur Holder today levelled a stinging attack against the Magistrates’ Court over the “inconsistent” manner in which it handles bails, after his client who is accused of importing over $800,000 worth of drugs into Barbados was remanded to HMP Dodds.

“There is a lack of consistency in the judicial system. What is fair for one needs to be fair for all,” Holder charged after prosecutor Sergeant Vernon Waithe was successful in his objections to bail for Duane Ryan Gittens.

The 34-year-old Gittens, a civil engineer of Lot 405 Westwood Drive, Husbands, St James, was arrested on August 31 following an operation at the Bridgetown Port conducted by the Drug Squad and Customs Enforcement Division.

Attorney-at-law Arthur Holder (inset) today launched a scathing attack against the Magistrates’ Court over the “inconsistent” manner in which it handles bails following the refusal by Acting Magistrate Sandra Rawlins to grant bail to his client, 34-year-old Duane Gittens, (left) of Lot 405 Westwood Drive, Husbands, who is accused of importing over $800,000 worth of drugs into the island.

Police say 40 pails of adhesive glue, each containing a quantity of cannabis wrapped in brown tape, were discovered, and investigations further revealed that these pails had arrived in Barbados onboard a cargo vessel from St Lucia and were consigned to a company in Barbados.

Lawmen said investigations by the Drug Squad led to the arrest of Gittens, and he was charged with possession, possession with intent to supply, trafficking and importation of 418.8 lbs of marijuana, with an estimated street value of over $837,000.

Waithe had appealed to the magistrate not to release the accused at this time because of the amount of drugs involved, the seriousness of the offence and the prosecution’s fear that Gittens would interfere with investigations.

However, an incensed Holder told Barbados TODAY after the sitting presided over by Acting Magistrate Sandra Rawlins in the District ‘A’ Traffic Court that bail had been granted to people facing charges in connection with drugs of much higher value.

The attorney mentioned several accused people who he said had been granted bail in the Magistrates’ Court for up to $3,000,000 worth of drugs, way more than the $837, 000 that his client is charged in connection with.

“Precedence has already been set in that the court can grant bail. I ask the court to be consistent because what’s good for the Jews must be good for the Gentiles,” Holder said, insisting that there was “nothing to say that my client is going to interfere with witnesses or that if granted bail he is not going to turn up for court.

“There is none of that, and he is not a flight risk.”

The veteran attorney, who practises criminal law, argued that his client is a businessman who has no previous convictions and is “a reputable citizen”.

“My client is not charged for treason or murder,” Holder maintained, adding that the court “must examine all the circumstances” surrounding the case.

“There is a lack of consistency and that is the problem I got in the Magistrates’ Court, that every magistrate does do as they like.”

He was also adamant that there was no direction for the Magistrates’ Court as it relates to the granting of bail.

“There is none. One magistrate can grant bail and the other magistrate can deny bail. Even though you are supposed to be guided by the Bail Act as to whether you should refuse or grant bail but obviously . . . it is left to the discretion . . . judgment and common sense of the magistrate.

“I would like to know what informs the magistrate’s decision. Based on the inconsistency in the Magistrates’ Court, I wonder if they really got judgment, if they are capable of exercising sound judgment in making decisions relative to the granting or denial of bail [because] based on the level of inconsistency it leaves a lot to be desired,” he stressed.

Gittens is expected to return to the No.2 District ‘A’ Magistrates Court on October 2.

“What is good for the Jews is good for the Gentiles,” Holder repeated. “My client ain’t got no connections that is why he ain’t get no bail.”

fernellawedderburn@barbadostoday.bb

18 Responses to Bail out

  1. BIGSKY September 5, 2017 at 11:21 pm

    If you follow the drugs you will get to the guns.And the same Jew is the same Gentile who is bringing them in.

    Reply
  2. Harry September 6, 2017 at 7:25 am

    how does Gittens qualify as being a reputable citizen? are reputable citizens involved in importing drugs?

    Reply
  3. harry turnover September 6, 2017 at 7:50 am

    That is what happens when MURDERERS are allowed bail every body else wants bail too.
    The PM talks about changes coming….hope that this bail thing for MURDERERS would be the FIRST on the list
    Just like at the Accident and Emergency Department where injuries associated with gang related incidents and drunk driving along with serious injuries take preference over those who have been waiting for hours for attention,….MURDERS..GUN CRIMES AND SERIOUS DRUG OFFENCES should be dealt with in less than 6 months.
    Mr.AG …this man en kill nabody ,how come you en saying that he should get bail too ?

    Reply
  4. Alex Alleyne September 6, 2017 at 8:16 am

    If he had a “spliff” it would have been no problem for he to ROT away in DODDS.
    Reason being… the Lawyers won’t be able to make on big $$$$$ offa he.

    Reply
  5. gsmiley September 6, 2017 at 8:48 am

    Harry we don’t even know if he is guilty.

    Reply
  6. Greengiant September 6, 2017 at 8:50 am

    firstly Gittens is still only accused, so let’s not assume his guilt. However, is he the owner of the company to which the product (glue) was imported? I think this is the case. He went to collect the cargo at the port, was caught in the sting. He might have placed the order for the product, and may have been even on the police’s radar as being involved for some time.

    So as an attorney, Holder has a duty to strongly represent his client and he has. His comparisons are factual, where lack of consistency is related, but the prosecution has made their case for a remand, knowing the attorney will not want to present certain arguments at this time, as the same arguments can be used during a trial against the accused. It’s a common tactic used by the prosecution, and yes unless the accused has admitted guilt, then the investigation has to continue and he should be kept away from the possibility of interference with the investigation. So in this case I have to see with the court for remanding at this time. I can’t remember any case where the accused got bail for this amount of drugs imported on first appearance. He was not caught on a boat, it was not found at his home, in his car or growing on his premises. He went to a legitimate port of entry to clear an imported construction product for his company. How many times has he done this? What else has he imported illegally? Who are his local, regional or international connections? So yes there has to be an investigation on all those fronts.

    Reply
  7. gsmiley September 6, 2017 at 8:52 am

    So up to this point he is still reputable. you seem to have that typical Bajan mentality which says. ‘Guilty until proven innocent’.
    @harry

    Reply
  8. Sue Donym September 6, 2017 at 9:08 am

    Well, is there a right a get bail or is there a right to be considered for bail? If we take away this step, then the only barrier will be the quantum of bail. Is this what we want?

    Reply
  9. Alex Alleyne September 6, 2017 at 9:24 am

    It should be MANDATORY that all bail for MURDER, GUN RELATED, DRUGS , should be paid in CASH.

    Reply
  10. Milli Watt September 6, 2017 at 9:44 am

    what bout de cocaine……….it was consigned to a company, somebody how come nobody ain’t charge for de cocaine.

    Reply
  11. Jennifer September 6, 2017 at 11:04 am

    Yet another system riddled in bullet holes.

    Reply
  12. Alex Alleyne September 6, 2017 at 11:16 am

    “For the love of money” , some Lawyers defend drug men like a lion protect their cubs.

    Reply
  13. Belfast September 6, 2017 at 12:26 pm

    With as much as thirty lawyers at a time rolling off the degree mill quite frequently , lawyers in Barbados now outnumber those individuals in farming or industry. Lawyer-ing is now the most lucrative Cash Crop in Barbados.

    Reply
    • hcalndre September 6, 2017 at 9:06 pm

      Belfast; then they graduate to a politician, that is where the money is.

      Reply
  14. The Negrocrat September 6, 2017 at 12:28 pm

    Innocent until proven guilty. Once remanded, his business will be destroyed, even if he is later found innocent.
    Who is to say that he was the imported of the drugs.
    It could be case of someone using his glue to get the drugs into the Island.

    Reply
  15. real vexx September 6, 2017 at 4:20 pm

    Yes Milliwatt, what about the cocaine? Questions that may never be answered. They want our children dabbling in white powder but scorn them for weed. SMH. And where the guns that coming with the weed? Gun culture stands on its own, so go check the white boys that got the gun dealer permits. You all issued them.

    Reply
    • Rasta wain September 6, 2017 at 4:43 pm

      they won’t go after them, matter of fact , surprise that your comment was published.

      Reply
  16. Belfast September 6, 2017 at 9:51 pm

    real vexx, this is Barbados, have you noticed on last night CBC news, the news reader stating that the associates of the unfortunate young man who lost his life at Cattlewash,asked not to be photographed or interviewed. A far cry from when Johnie Black is the unfortunate victim and the same CBC has no hang ups in jucking their mikes and cameras into the faces of the mourning family. That also goes for the Brigade of social media snappers who post pictures of other victims on the net in double quick time.
    Is the Mormons right when their bible refer to blacks as a cursed race? (The Book of Nephi 2 )

    Reply

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