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Minnis Demands Files on Dropped Gun Charges


Free National Movement (FNM) Leader Dr. Hubert Minnis said he is still awaiting access to the files in connection with a criminal case that that was dismissed by the Office of the Attorney General.

Dr. Minnis said to date he has sent two formal letters to Prime Minister Perry Christie requesting that he has unfettered access to the Nolle Prosequi issued by Acting Attorney General, Jerome Fitzgerald in the matter of George and Janice Hayles.

The couple was represented by Attorney General Allyson Maynard-Gibson at their February 2010 arraignment on gun possession charges.

However, last month the gun possession charges against the Hayles were dropped.

In a press statement issued Tuesday Dr. Minnis said in customary delay style, the prime minister said one thing with great fanfare, and then is notoriously slow to live up to his word.

“In a contribution to the House of Assembly on January 9, 2013, the Right Honourable Prime Minister stated publicly, ‘The Leader of the Opposition under his constitutional appointment, if he really wants to find out, can have access to find out, officially,’ with particular regard to the issue of whether there was any consideration of national security affecting the discontinuance of the case against the former clients of the attorney general,” Dr. Minnis said.

“To date, the prime minister has yet to be true to his word. He has yet to give the officials within Cabinet office approval to accommodate my review of this file for the purpose of determining whether the Opposition can support the conclusion arrived at by the attorney general and, or the acting attorney general. My colleagues and I in the Free National Movement are greatly concerned that the prime minister is grossly underestimating the extent to which this matter continues to significantly erode the reputation of the Bahamas judicial system in the international community in general and public confidence in his government in particular.”

Dr. Minnis said final resolution of this matter cannot be delayed any further and added that the currently available facts suggest that “the acting attorney general, by some miraculous stroke of coincidence, was able to identify and act upon this particular file while the attorney general was off the island and the Minister of State in the Attorney General’s Office, Damien Gomez was not available.”

“The Bahamian people are deeply suspicious about this matter and the prime minister should move with dispatch to allay their concerns and put this matter behind him and the country,” Dr. Minnis added.

“If there is a perception that a senior government official can use his or her influence to realise or influence a particular outcome in a matter where there seems to be some potential conflict of interest, why would anyone have confidence in the fair and impartial administration of justice by this government?”
Dr. Minnis said for Bahamians or foreigners to have confidence in and to invest in The Bahamas, they must first have confidence in the people who administer it.

Written by Jones Bahamas

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