Categorized | National News

Seven Immigrant Detainees Freed

Justice Gregory Hilton ruled that seven persons currently detained by the Bahamas Department of Corrections must be freed as their detentions were unlawful.

The persons include Verante Mocombe, Michelot Merillien, Gerna Jean- Tinord and her daughter Gemma Joseph and Kediesha Bent- John and her daughter Chitara John.

This  came after noted Queen’s Counsel Fred Smith filed habeas corpus applications last year on behalf of the aforementioned persons.

Justice Hilton in his ruling said the respondents did not appear to have utilized the procedures specified in the Immigration Act for reasons best known to themselves and there was no other basis upon which the applicants can be held and detained.

The judge found that the applicants were unlawfully detained, contrary to the provisions of the law and their continued detention would be unlawful and ordered they be released unconditionally and costs granted to the applicants to be taxed if not agreed.

In the case of Michellin Merlot,  the judge ruled that the applicant would not be entitled to cost as the proceedings should have ended after the applicant had been released.

The applications for habeas corpus writs were filed in the Supreme Court against the Attorney General Carl Bethel, Minister of Immigration Brent Symonette, Director of Immigration William Pratt and Superintendent of the Carmichael Road Detention Centre, Peter Joseph.

The applications were among some 15 separate cases in which the government has been asked to prove the lawfulness of the applicants’ arrest and further detention at the Carmichael Road Detention Centre.

Written by Amajahl Knowles

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