Yesterday I spoke to you about the state of Criminal Justice in Jamaica in part one of what I intend to be a two-part series on the subject. This is not the first time that I have spoken about Jamaica’s broken and woefully inept criminal justice system, and it certainly will not be the last.
As long as the system is as decrepit as it is, I will continue to shine a light on it. I am unrestrained from telling the truth as I am not in the employ of that system anymore , neither do I intend to be a part of it in the future.
One thing is certain, is that one doesn’t need to be inside a fire to know that it is hot, one does not need to be an expert to know that if one jumps off the Flat Bridge he will land in water.
We live in a technological age which makes access to information rather easy. Under freedom of information laws governments and agencies are not allowed to be Judge and Jury in determining whether the public has access to pertinent information it needs. The Jamaican Supreme Court for example has a website where all the pertinent information that may be required by interested parties are posted. Subsequently it is a little naïve’ for anyone to believe or suggest that one has to be immersed within the system in order to understand or fully appreciate what the inner workings are. Conversely I daresay it is rather uniquely Jamaican that we continue to delude ourselves into thinking that only certain people who are indeed heavily invested and or immersed within a particular discipline may appropriately address that particular discipline. What we have found is that misconception is directly attributable to some of the problems that are plaguing our country today.
I incorporated the forgone paragraph in response to my very good friend and former colleague who was really kind to respond to the previous blog. I appreciate his response and find him credible and heroic in voicing his opinion without hiding behind a moniker even as he still resides in Jamaica.
Yesterday I told you Jamaica’s national security policy could be summed up in a single sentence (“spend all you can to protect the most despicable murderers”) It did not take long after I wrote that blog for the most notable face of criminal support in Jamaica to emerge in support of the most heartless, brutal, cold-blooded murderers on our planet.
Carolyn Gomes is probably a decent woman, but she is woefully misguided. I too believe everyone is entitled to protections under the laws, but Gomes by her actions have made it significantly and abundantly clear that she has used the Agency she heads (Jamaicans for Justice) as a tool against law enforcement and as a source of support for the most hardened murderers operating in Jamaica.
There is no rational explanation for the craven positions she and her agency takes in the defense of criminals, without even an attempt to balance that unmitigated support with empathy for crime victims who have suffered at the hands of these murderers. As one could reasonably expect she wasted no time in coming out in defense of these criminals , not suggesting, but demanding that members of the military be removed from the remand center, and effective control of prisoners.
Make no mistake this will happen. Never mind that authorities have categorically stated that the high-profile criminals at the heart of this issue are doing so because they want exactly what Gomes wants for them. They want to be removed from the control of the Military, they want to be returned to general population where they will be under the supervision of inept, poorly trained,corrupt correction officers(warders).
This begs the question was this response coördinated with the brief filed in the Supreme Court on behalf of the same criminals? As I pointed out yesterday these criminals have no established source of income as far as this blogger knows, so where does the money come from to pay the high-priced criminal lawyers who fall over themselves to represent them in the highest court in the country? Is the money coming from the same source as the funds that keep (JFJ) in business? Or does (JFJ) gets funded from the same pool that pays the high-priced (vultures)? Ask yourselves the question , where do these men get the funds to pay these high-priced lawyers (vultures)? And yes my dear friend Mac They are vultures, and they do double as law-makers , there is no discrepancy there. That statement is a fact, you see my friend it may be an inconvenient truth ‚but the truth nonetheless.
There are innumerable cases, too many to mention of Justices on courts at various levels of the Judiciary in Jamaica who routinely grant bail to criminals after they are arrested for serious crimes like murder and rape , they promptly go out kill or rape again are granted bail again and again and again to commit the same crimes sometimes up to five times over, even as they await trial for the first case on which were charged.
Jamaican Judges argue that bail was not intended to be punitive, they argue bail was not intended to be punishment.
That may be all well and good according to British Judges, (which I will come back to). Since bail was not meant to be punishment who argues for the victims who are routinely gunned down on almost every street corner of Kingston and other cities in Jamaica, in broad daylight, as onlookers stand there transfixed, too scared to move, too scared to tell police who did it, even though they know the perpetrators? Too scared to speak , knowing if they tell they will be next. From Hagley Park road to Slipe road, from Tower Street to Matthews lane the blood of Jamaicans continue to run while Judges fiddle over semantics, refusing to lock criminals away for the maximum time allowed by law. If Judges continue to make the same arguments then yes the law is an ass and the Judges are even bigger Asses.
England ‚the former colonial power Jamaicans quote, and seek to emulate, do not make the same arguments in defense of their citizens. London is one of the most protected cities in the world, there are hundreds of thousands of cameras that literally stitch together the security of the city into manageable nerve centers where security professionals monitor the every move of Londoner in an effort to make sure the safety and security of that city is preserved. Whether one believes in big brother having that much control is a legitimate argument to be debated, but the results are impossible to deny.
In a sentence, countries which value their citizens understand that security is job number one.
It is not about crash programme work, it is not about faux tears of caring , nations do not thrive on hugs and platitudes. Jamaica’s Judges like the politicians are complicity responsible for the high rate of criminality that continue to plague the nation. I spent 10 years in the Police force and I left it knowing that I could not make a difference serving in that department, I refused to be consumed by a system in which the people who risk their lives are set up to fail.
Many people are fooled by the “mister bigs” who hand over a car to the commissioner or a couple of motorcycles here and there. I would much rather see people with power in Jamaica use those powers to lobby for legislation which puts criminals in prison where they belong.
Then again I won’t hold my breath, some of the most powerful in the suits and tie, are the most powerful gang leaders.