Dominican officers receive additional training

first_img Share Share Sharing is caring! LocalNews Dominican officers receive additional training by: – April 24, 2013 (L-R): Superintendant of Police Ainsworth Irish, United Kingdom High Commission Criminal Justice Advisor to the Caribbean region Dan Sutter and state attorney in the DPP’s Office Clement Joseph speaking to the media on TuesdayPolice officers, customs officers and members of the judiciary have completed two training sessions on two new pieces of legislation which will hopefully “revolutionize” the litigation process here.Twenty-five police officers and three customs officers participated in the training which ended on Tuesday, April 23rd. The magistrates and criminal high court judge participated in Monday’s training session. The training, according to State attorney in the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Clement Joseph, dealt with the Protection of Witnesses Act and the amendment to the Criminal Law and Procedure Act which were enacted in Parliament last month.“What these two pieces of legislation has done is they have really revolutionized the way that things are going to be done in Dominica,” Mr Joseph said. The Criminal Procedures Act will allow police officers to do video recording of interviews from witnesses. “Instead of the accused statement being read, the jury would have the opportunity of seeing the statement being given by the accused over electronic media,” Mr Joseph continued.The Witness Protection Act on the other hand makes provision for vulnerable witnesses to give evidence via live video links instead of attending court proceedings.This is some of the video recording equipment which the Police Force received last year December“Vulnerable witnesses such as victims of domestic abuse, sexual offences or any other case where the victim can feel intimidated in coming to court, etcetera, the prosecution can apply to the court to have the statement of that person recorded or given via live video link,” Mr Joseph said.The magistrate’s court is equipped to facilitate these video links so that the victims can be away from the court and give their evidence, be cross-examined and be seen by the jury.United Kingdom High Commission Criminal Justice Advisor to the Caribbean region Dan Sutter who was instrumental in drafting these legislations also facilitated the training.“I think it is a great opportunity to promote to victims of crime, witnesses of crime and also to defendants that the playing field has changed. In terms of witnesses, there are now important powers to protect them through court process, one of which is through the live link also witness anonymity,” Mr Sutter said.He commended the Dominica Government for enacting the legislation and listening to the needs of their citizens so that there can be a better criminal justice system.He also commended the police officers for their “forthright approach to protect citizens” as well as the DPP’s office for their work in facilitating and implementing the training.Meanwhile, superintendent of police Ainsworth Irish noted that the training has helped to sharpen the police skills.“It was a real eye opener and it is left now to the police and the prosecutorial team to go out there and work and look at the legislation,” Mr Irish said.The police officers also received training to conduct these interviews last year December during a suspect interview training course facilitated by two British nationals.Dominica Vibes Newscenter_img Share Tweet 15 Views   one commentlast_img

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