IN THE COURT OF APPEAL
CIVIL APPEAL NO. 10 OF 2004
IN THE MATTER
OF THE CONSTITUTION OF
IN THE MATTER OF AN APPLICATION BY
BERNARD COARD AND OTHERS FOR REDRESS
PURSUANT TO SECTION 16 OF THE SAID
CONTRAVENTION OF SECTIONS 3, 5 AND 8 THEREOF
IN RELATION TO THEM
THE ATTORNEY GENERAL
BERNARD COARD, CALLISTUS BERNARD,
LESTER REDHEAD, CHRISTOPHER STROUDE,
JOHN ANTHONY VENTOUR, DAVE BARTHOLOMEW,
SELWYN STRACHAN, AND CECIL PRIME
SUPPLEMENTARY WRITTEN ARGUMENTS
Of Bernard Coard and Ewart Layne
Against the Application
For a Stay Of Execution
Of The Order
Of The Honourable Justice Kenneth Benjamin
(i) At paragraph 13(vii) of the aforementioned arguments dated 13th April we state that the Learned Trial Judge accepted the Appellant’s argument that it is sufficient that there is a nexus between the sentence of the Court and the sentence in effect for the detention to be in execution of the sentence of a court per Section 3(1) of the Constitution. In fact the judge did not give a view on this argument of the Appellant [See Paragraph 56 of Judgement]. The fact that the judge did not express a view makes no difference to our argument. But please read paragraph 13 of the written arguments aforesaid with the correction stated herein in mind.
(iii) The Learned Trial Judge “did not dispute that the Governor General may have considered the sentences imposed on the three other co-accused convicted of manslaughter” [paragraph 56 of judgement]. This argument was put forward by the Appellant. But this argument served to emphasise that what the Governor General carried out in imposing imprisonment for the remainder of natural life as a condition to the pardon, was the classical sentencing function of determining the severity of punishment.
(iv) The Learned Trial Judge determined the case on the fairly narrow basis that in drawing a distinction between imprisonment for the remainder of natural life and imprisonment for life simpliciter, the Governor General envisaged a choice of punishment. He exercised the choice by imposing imprisonment for the remainder of natural life in some cases and imprisonment for life simpliciter in other cases. The exercise of that choice rendered the punishment of imprisonment for the remainder of natural life unlawful [see paragraph 58 of judgement]. It is submitted that it is hopeless to seek to fault this finding of law by the Learned Trial Judge.