Appeal Court refuses Bisram’s urgency request

first_imgChallenge to DPP’s murder charges– applicant taking case to CCJIn what is being viewed as an abuse of the court system, high profile murder suspect Marcus Bisram’s move to have the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) withdraw a murder case pressed against him was delayed owing to the Appeal Court dismissing an urgency application on Tuesday. This determination caused his mother, Sharmila Inderjali, the applicant, to pay the State over $250,000 in court costs.Bisram, a wealthy Guyanese-born businessman based in New York, is accused of having arraigned Berbice carpenter Fiyazz Narinedatt’s death after he rejected his sexual advances two years ago. Attorney Siand Dhurjon appeared for theMurder accused: Marcus Bisramapplicant, while Solicitor General Kym Kyte and Stacy Goodings appeared for the State. Goodings has been appearing for the DPP Chambers as the State Prosecutor in the preliminary inquiry (PI).After the ruling, Kyte told Guyana Times that the court costs awarded could not compensate for resources the State has expended. Meanwhile, attorney Dhurjon confirmed that the applicant would be taking his case to the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ).The Appellate Court’s decision was read by acting Appellate Justice Dr. Arif Bulkan, who opined that the applicant’s filing repeated litigation amounted to an abuse of the court’s process. According to the case’s background as outlined in the judgment, High Court Judge Navindra Singh had already dismissed the case on November 24, 2017.The appeal was mounted by Bisram’s mother, Sharmila Inderjali. She was the applicant as ‘next friend’ of her son. What the mother sought of the court was enshrined in two prerogative orders against the DPP. One was an Order Nisi or Rule Nisi of Prohibition prohibiting the DPP from further proceeding with the murder case on grounds that this would be “irrational, unreasonable and an abuse of power”. The second was an Order or Rule Nisi of Mandamus compelling the DPP to wholly withdraw and discontinue the case on the grounds as previously stated.The Appellate judge highlighted that this most recent case was the third such application that sought similar reliefs – these being to compel the DPP not to continue prosecution against Bisram. It was indicated that a separate motion was brought another judge in a separate county.“This troubling history raises issues (not to mention eyebrows) as to possible abuse of process and deception,” the judges outlined.What the court refused was the application for an urgent hearing based on Bisram’s contention that his liberty was at stake and that the case against him was weak. After citing several decisions of case law, the court found that the documents exhibited by the applicant could not yield reason or submission that this case was deserving of an urgent hearing.The court, however, opined that Bisram is “far from unique”, as his case is one of hundreds of similar matters before the court. Moreover, the Appellate judges stressed that there are multiple stages before a person is eventually sentenced. The judges further reminded that under law, murder is serious, perhaps second only to treason. This means that Bisram’s case will be heard like any other.“…what is at stake here is no trivial charge, but a matter of immense public concern. There is thus a very strong public interest in all of the state’s criminal justice procedures being allowed to progress,” the court reasoned.Referring to attorney Dhurjon’s submission that a witness offered contradictory statements during a separate PI under oath, the judges disagreed with his argument that it being under oath immediately rendered it stronger. The judges stressed that evidence given in one trial is inadmissible at a different trial if is led to prove truth.The Court highlighted that the applicant and attorney, Sanjeev Datadin, in written submissions accused various officers of the State of misconduct, and some by name.“These are serious allegations against some of the highest constitutional offices in the country, and are not likely to go unchallenged. They should be given every opportunity to do so,” the Court said.At the same time, however, recognising constitutional considerations, the court reasoned that contextual factors discussed should not be used as a shield against criticism or excuses for sloth. The judges have declared also that the time span of appeals should not differ too dramatically.“Every person is entitled to access to the courts on the same terms; any preference afforded on the basis of one’s connections or ability to access the best lawyers is a violation of equality, and even the rule of law,” the Appellate judges outlined.In handing down its decision, the court refused Inderjali’s application for relief as sought in her February 6, 2018 Motion appealing Justice Singh’s decision. Further, the court determined that the challenge to the November 24, 2014 Fixed Date Application must take its normal course.Meanwhile, Bisram’s legal team is in the US still fighting the extradition order which was signed in October last by US Judge Peggy Kuo. Bisram was charged in absentia in 2016 for the murder of 27-year-old Number 70 Village Corentyne Carpenter Fiyazz Narinedatt who was killed.Radesh Motie, Diadatt Datt, Harri Paul Parsram, Orlando Dickie and Niran Yacoob, were all charged. Two of the accused had allegedly confessed to investigators that they were ordered by the overseas-based Guyanese businessman to dump the carpenter’s body on the Number 70 Public Road to make his death seem the result of a hit and run accident.Additionally, the businessman’s mother and sister were accused of offering bribes to Police ranks to “duck the case”. Since the commencement of the preliminary inquiry in Berbice, several persons were accused of witness tampering.last_img

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