Attorney-at-Law Hugh Wildman
Time is running out for the St. Catherine Parish Court to complete a Preliminary Inquiry for a man accused of murder or risk the case being removed from the court system.
The accused, Mervyn Cameron, has been before the court since 2013 charged with murder.
However, his case has suffered significant delays, prompting him to sue the State for a breach of his constituitonal right to a trial within a reasonable time.
His claim was successful and the Supreme Court in March set a date for his compensation to be calculated.
The court also set the May 30 deadline for the Preliminary Inquiry to be concluded, failing which, any trial of the claimant on the charges on which he is currently before the Parish Court shall be stayed.
Attorney-at-Law Hugh Wildman, who is representing Mr. Cameron, confirmed on Beyond the Headlines on Tuesday that the inquiry is still experiencing delays.
He said there has been a lack of witnesses, forcing to judge to keep adjourning the case.
"I think mindful of the fact that the time is now running out, we have this indecent haste on the part of the magistrate now to conclude to get the evidence in, when after five years, nothing like this was done," he contended.
Mr. Wildman has also taken the position that this recent judgement by the Supreme Court will have implications for other cases in the system even though Preliminary Inquiries have been abolished.
In his view, the principle is still applicable to other types of cases.
"You have heard several instances where delays have taken place in excess of even five years... In fact, it applies not only to committal proceedings or to preliminary inquiry then, it applies also to trial in the Supreme Court," he purported.