Charges dismissed against Crown prosecutor; SNO editor expresses disappointment over handling of information

Charges dismissed against Crown prosecutor; SNO editor expresses disappointment over handling of information
James
James

Charges of unlawful harm and assault with a firearm against a Crown counsel attached to the Department of Public Prosecutions have been dismissed after the defendant’s girlfriend declined to take the matter further.

Giovanni James appeared before Magistrate Charon Gardener at the First District Court in Castries on Monday, June 3, 2013, but the virtual complainant “made representation of not wanting to proceed with the matter” and “the matter was consequently dismissed for want of prosecution”, according to a press release from the Police Press Office.

The press release further stated that on Saturday, June 1, 2013 at about 1:30 am, officers attached to the Criminal Investigations Department responded to a distress call at Union Hilltop, Castries.

“On arrival the officers were met by a young woman who identified herself to them. Based on her report and certain observations made by the police, she was removed from the scene and was transported to Victoria Hospital where she was medically examined, treated and discharged.

“Subsequently, an investigation ensued. Giovanni James, a Crown counsel attached to the Department of Public Prosecutions, was arrested and charged for unlawful harm and assault with a firearm,” the press release added.

When St. Lucia News Online broke the news on Monday, June 3, 2013, indicating that James was confirmed charged and was appearing in court, several court and police sources contacted our news team with fury, indicating that our information was erroneous.

One of the court sources specifically told our news team that James was never charged and the case may be dismissed, and that we should remove that he is charged from the story and the headlines. Another source from the justice system told SNO that the complainant was never hospitalised and that we should wait on complete and correct information.

Initially, the Police Press Office indicated that it had no information on the incident when contacted, though reliable SNO sources indicated that James was charged and the only way he could have appeared in court is if he was charged.

Managing Director and Editor of Andrews Media Services Corporation dba St. Lucia News Online, Merrick Andrews, has expressed his disappointment with several officials over the handling of the matter.

Andrews explained: “St. Lucia News Online was in receipt of this news since the day it happened, on Saturday, June 1, 2013, but decided to hold the information until Monday when it was expected that James would be charged/appear in court. Our court reporter was present at court on Monday and confirmed that James, having been charged, is also scheduled to appear in court.

“Later on, it was confirmed by our reporter on location that James is in court, so we went ahead and posted the story that James was arrested and charged. Moments later, sources on Blackberry Messenger and at the court house informed us that our information was incorrect and that the complainant (James’ girlfriend) was never hospitalized and that James was never charged and will not be charged. We were also informed that we could be slapped with a lawsuit if we do not remove the part that he is charged. Earlier, our reporter had made contact with the Police Press Office for information and was told that the Office had no information on the matter, which is weird considering that we knew for a fact that the man was charged.

“Why would he appear in court if he was not charged? And why would the police not have information on such a serious matter? And for any matter to be dismissed IN COURT, the alleged perpetrator had to be charged! It made no sense and we sensed a cover-up. While I can understand the difficult circumstances being experienced by James and the complainant, the news media has a right to report on such matters, regardless of the professional status of the persons involved in the case. Many such cases have gone through the court system and our news team never had any road block or threats leveled against us regarding obtaining such information. Nobody in Saint Lucia is above the law. A crime is a crime.

“Please note that we are not accusing James of being involved in any cover-up. We have no evidence he tried to cover-up his case. What we are pointing out are the road blocks being put in our way by some members of the justice system in ensuring that we provide accurate information. We were being deliberately misled by several persons. This is an issue we are bringing up against those officials, not James.”

Andrews added: “We are however happy that the Police Press Office eventually gave a comprehensive report on the conclusion of the matter today, indicating that the charges against James have been dismissed because the young lady declined to proceed with the matter. However, I urge persons in the justice system to be fair and balanced in the handling of all cases. It did not look right trying to mislead our online newspaper and our news team when we had factual information that James was charged, that the charges were assault related, and that the complainant was hospitalised.”

James was called to the Bar in August 2009.

 

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24 COMMENTS

  1. This article is very interesting. What appeared to be a domestic dispute has been somewhat magnified by the media and the like. James has been publicly humiliated but the'young lady' in question I have not heard much about. She is in the media often and is known by many so why has the media not publicise her name? Is it because she has worked for the STAR or has been affiliated with many youth activities? It's not fair to assume that the young lady is the victim only, so is James. This was a private matter and should have been dealt with accordingly. Also people often think that in cases of abuse it's always the man's fault. But often a pretty face carries much lies. What you see is not always what you get. It is unfortunate for both parties involved james mostly cos his name is soiled in the media. I do hope that his young career is not spoilt by this.

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  2. Some of you saint lucians who have commented i presume are utterly ignorant in desposition.If a case is brought before the courts let the verdicts prevail.In the famous case of OJ simpson,was he provern guilty? no he wasn't, and for that matter who are we to despute the facts brought before the court.This is a world we are living in today, where the truth is a fragment amongst written lies waiting to be disected and comprehended by people who sick truth in the first place. I am not excusing actions taken by both parties invovled in the incident but what does a domestic affair got to do with the lodge you analphabetic individual.From reading this story it is paramount that the lady involved in the matter is a memeber of the media and james a prosecutor.. both i think are interlectual individuals. If this question can be answered then the truth is so clear. Why did she drop her charges? who does that in the modern day.For people who commented about this article remember the media is not there to provide you with the truth but to provide you with a profitable story, youR comment is irrelavant to SNO, it holds no supstantial ground. The Media around the world today are mere machines of a meme to maintain and inform you of where you stand in this society.You were not informed however of truth but a fragment. STOP BEING LIVESTOCK TO THE MEDIA AND THE GOVERNMENT YOU LUCIANS.

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  3. Now a days woman does bit man and self defence will never pass. She will find another man to bit and then the truth will come out.

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  4. While I do not know what transpired, my issue is with the threat to the media which was apparently unwarranted

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  5. It's good to see that the lodge still has influence and working in our society. The brotherhood always wins! hands down

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  6. Yeah I was wondering the same thing after I heard what happen.. I sure is she that fly first, knowing them women already.

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  7. I am sure if people knew the real story behind this alleged abuse. They would see it for what it is. A one sided gender system, And one of the biggest bor borl in st.lucia.
    Again like the police statement said." The charges was dropped because the young lady would NOT provide evidence to continue forward"

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  8. The young lady in question is a member of the media consequently the story being told is her version. St.Lucians let us remember that there are three sides to every story, hers, his and the truth. When the dust settles I hope she does the right thing and tells the truth. We are quick to jump to conclusions when we are not in the situation but do we really know the truth or what the media wants us to believe is the truth to protect their own. I DO NOT CONDONE violence but I know for sure that the character being slain here is not the one that should be on trial. I pray that the Almighty reveals in due course the REAl truth!

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  9. Good report SNO.It is just sad that a crown prosecutor would commit such a crime.In my opinion he should know better.This is sad.Our society is so corrupt and nothing is being done about it.UTTERLY DISGUSTED BY THIS INCIDENT.

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  10. Agree 'Gitdong' SNO is a breath of fresh air. Keep up the good work SNO, threats of lawsuits and the likes r common place in this neck of the woods where some ppl imagine themselves 'above the law' and 'untouchable'. Smfh.

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  11. Think I can recall the Dpp in a rare interview complaining about the 'wange ma' culture in slu.... Well its in your face now Mrs. Dpp, how bout that???

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  12. If no charges were ever laid, then how come the 'comprehensive report' from the Police Press Office says they were 'DISMISSED'? It can only be so if it existed in the first place. Cho!

    He is a prosecutor, looking to send you and I to jail for the same crimes! Now his daddy is big-time lawyer and has friends in high places so all these cover-ups and bullshit can occur. Well i not buying anything from ...again!

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  13. A crime is a crime. While this statement is true our reality is that many live above the law "man's law" but as sure as there is a God there will be justice, it may not be what human beings desire but it will be impartial. It is high time both men and women love each other like God loves us and stop adulterating the verb under the cloak of abuse. What self concept do we have of ourselves, how much do we value our lives and what faith do we have in God to see us through trials like these?

    God bless Saint Lucia

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  14. You haven't seen anything yet, just wait till we join the stupid CCJ. If they walk like kangaroos, then Kangaroo Courts they are. The law and political professions are Satan approved, and the worst is a politician who is also a lawyer/liar.

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  15. I guess when he throws her out a three story building window and cripples her, or beats her with a shoe in town, only then will she press charges. Then again, she might not. Some women just too stupid!

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  16. u dan kno "thats me alright" fire burn dem satan worshipers e money is all they hav and through dirtyness fire must burn dem man dts a must their children children will be rich but never sell out!!

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  17. SNO should have taken it further and expose those who were tryin to cover-up....is high time that "norm mama" and "nenen and parweh" bullshit stop

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  18. It's a shame that the laws of St Lucia are only made to judge poor folks. It's not for the influencial and rich and our history proves it. Big up to SNO. This news outlet is a breath of freash air!!

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  19. Kudos to you SNO. Corruption, dishonesty and cover up is pervasive in the force and legal system.

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  20. What a farce! And my God, what a cover up! Unless we start making our powers that be as accountable as anyone else, we not gonna get anywhere.

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  21. Oh please spare me a minute. We do not need no more details because nothing is going to happen. A couple years ago a horrible man name Wallcott beat and kick a young woman he was having an affair with until he break her back, and she's now a Quadriplegic and nothing happen to him up to this day.The reason is because he is name brand. I will never forget this poor woman they sweep that case under the rug never heard about it again. Giovanni James is Crown Prosecutor now you tell me what's going to happen? The DPP in St.Lucia is the biggest clown in the Caribbean, the Judicial system back home they all breast feed from the same breast,shame on them the wheel of Justic is not spinning at all only for the ones with name and money not the the average joe Amen

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