Last update: 07-Dec-2013 2:31 am
Saturday, December 07, 2013
Trinidad & Tobago Guardian Online
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Court rules in Alleyne’s case after by-election
Senior Magistrate Annette McKenzie will rule on the no-case submission in Ian Alleyne’s trial for resisting arrest the day after the St Joseph by-election. McKenzie decided to postpone her decision after attorneys yesterday engaged in fiery negotiations over the date for his return to court, noting it could clash with his political affairs.
After state prosecutor George Busby presented his submissions at the Port-of-Spain Magistrates Court, he said the court should give the ruling before the November 4 election, as Alleyne might be busy afterwards. Alleyne’s lawyer, Israel Khan, SC, noted that his client was a candidate in the election and suggested the ruling should be given a couple days later. McKenzie eventually reached a compromise and adjourned the case to November 5.
Khan, making arguments in support of the no-case submission on October 7, had claimed that Alleyne’s arrest in April last year was illegal, as the police did not have reasonable cause to suspect he had committed an offence. Yesterday, Khan said while it was undisputed that Alleyne resisted the police, he could not have committed an offence if his arrest was illegal. Khan also claimed Alleyne’s arrest should be deemed illegal because the police failed to immediately inform Alleyne of the grounds for it before detaining him.
In response, Busby said the submission should be dismissed. “The arrest is plainly lawful. From the evidence it is clear that they had reasonable cause,” Busby said. He said on the night of Alleyne’s arrest, the police displayed “remarkable tolerance” and were only required to inform Alleyne of the detailed grounds for his arrest when it was reasonably possible.
He said while they were waiting for Alleyne to leave the building, an “unruly” crowd had gathered at the entrance and exits of CCN’s compound and police had to act quickly to prevent a breach of the peace. He said because of Alleyne’s actions it was impossible for the police to explain the grounds for the arrest to him immediately.
Alleyne is charged with resisting ASP Ajith Persad in the execution of his duties. The charge stems from Alleyne’s arrest on April 19, 2012 while he was suspected of committing offences under the Sexual Offences by airing a video that identified an under-age rape victim. Alleyne was eventually charged three times under Section 32 (2), which makes it an offence to reveal the identity of a rape victim during a broadcast. He pleaded guilty and was fined $30,000. He maintains his innocence on the resisting-arrest charge.
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