September 21, 2020

Governor’s Office funds short term attachment of Criminal Justice Advisor

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courthouseThe Governor’s Office is funding a short-term attachment of a Criminal Justice Advisor from the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) in the UK. Claire Wetton commenced her 12 week secondment here on 27 January, with a series of introductory meetings with the RCIPS, the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (ODPP), Judiciary and members of the Court Staff. Ms Wetton was initially joined by Specialist Prosecutor, Antony Salmon, from CPS International Division in London, who will provide support from the UK.

The objective of the posting includes providing help and assistance to the Summary Court Team of the Office of the DPP and to the Court to deal with the most important weaknesses in the criminal justice system.

This is part of the process of improving the delivery of justice, enhancing security and reducing the threat of crime to the Cayman Islands. Ms. Wetton will be focussing on case management and trial issues in the Summary Court, a review of the Criminal Procedure Code rules, disclosure and witness care, (particularly in the prosecution of domestic violence cases), gang crime and dealing with children as witnesses. She will also deliver training to RCIPS officers.

This deployment is further evidence of the continued commitment to ensure more effective delivery of justice. The focus is on operational outcomes that make a real difference to the protection of the public especially vulnerable victims and witnesses. The Crown Prosecution Service has an established network of legal experts around the world providing advice and assistance, making them ideal partners for this project.

Her Excellency the Governor said;

“I am pleased that this office can support such an important project. Identifying and improving upon procedures which can assist in the smooth and efficient running of the court system is crucial to reducing criminality in the Cayman Islands. I have asked Claire to meet with me on a regular basis to update me personally on the project as it goes forward.”

The Director of Public Prosecutions, Ms Cheryl Richards said;

“We are grateful for the assistance offered in a review of the Summary Court procedures and issues in order to assist with capacity building in the management of our heavy case load. We look forward to working closely with Ms Wetton and have already begun to discuss with her some of the issues faced and suggestions for improvement. We look forward to taking on board any recommendations arising out of this initiative.”

CPS Criminal Justice Advisor, Claire Wetton said;

“I have already established good relations with all of those who will provide an input into this project, including the ODPP, the RCIPS and the Courts. I will consider and advise on ways in which some processes can be enhanced or simplified, to reduce the burden on the Courts, specifically the summary court and ultimately assist in improving the efficiency of the processes.”

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IMAGE: www.cireba.com Cayman Legislation Building

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