Magistrate Violated Law in Sentencing Client Says Attorney

SAT TV NEWS 14-04-01 Tuesday.Still026Attorney Tiyani Behanzin, who recently secured a significant victory at the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court of Appeal on Thursday March 27th for his client, Venezuelan Luis Jose Salazar Andriago says the Magistrate at the Roseau Magistrate’s Court violated the law in sentencing his client.

Mr. Behanzin had appealed a sentence by Magistrate Bernard Pacquette in January 2014, after he fined Andriago $5,000 and sentenced him to one year in prison for illegally entering Dominica on January 31st 2014.

The sentence was appealed on the grounds that it was too harsh, a point also agreed upon by the Prosecution.

Mr. Behazin noted even after pleading guilty, his client still did not receive the customary discount for not wasting the Court’s time.



Luis Jose Salazar Andriago

Luis Jose Salazar Andriago

He also noted, the default period was limited, in that Section 105 in accordance with the Laws of Dominica states, the maximum period of default served for any fine at the Criminal and Magistrate’s Court is six months, so the Magistrate suggesting a year imprisonment is outside of his jurisdiction.

Additionally, Andriago was ordered to serve another year, adding up two maximum penalties for one offence, a breach of section 27-A Amended, the Attorney noted.

The Attorney also highlighted that his client was kept outside of the 72 hour period before being charged, which was a blatant violation of his Constitutional rights.

He added, during his client’s incarceration he was denied medical attention and was subjected to a beating, which could have resulted in a Civil Lawsuit.

Mr. Behanzin went on to say the actions of Mr. Pacquette in sentencing his client was unlawfully done, and should have never occurred as he had no basis for any of his judgments.

Mr. Andriago who was set free by the Court of Appeal is currently in police custody awaiting deportation.

© 2012 SAT Telecommunications Ltd.

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