Sun | Jan 26, 2020

Tesha Miller Trial | Judge to begin case review Monday

Published:Friday | November 29, 2019 | 12:14 AMNickoy Wilson/Gleaner Writer
Miller
Miller

Trial judge Justice Georgiana Fraser will on Monday begin her summation of the evidence presented in the trial of Tesha Miller, who is accused of ordering the 2008 murder of then chairman of the Jamaica Urban Transit Company (JUTC), Douglas Chambers.

This comes after attorneys yesterday made closing arguments to a seven-member jury.

A senior deputy director of public prosecutions urged the jury to believe the testimony of the Crown’s star witness, who claimed to have once been a member of the Spanish Town-based Clansman Gang.

The witness cannot be named because of a court order.

The prosecutor told the jury that there was merit in bringing a confessed gangster, and not an angel, to testify.

“The best person to tell you and identify a criminal and criminal activities is a criminal,” the prosecutor said.

The witness, the defence argued, accepted his punishment even though he had accepted a plea deal.

During the trial, which began on November 13, it was revealed that the witness had entered into a plea deal with the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions to testify against Miller.

Using the Bible handed to witnesses for swearing on in court, the prosecutor read from Luke 5:32, which states: “I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners, to repentance,” likening this call by Jesus to the plea deal given to the witness.

She also pointed out that the witness could at any time withdraw from the agreement without giving a reason.

However, Bert Samuels, the attorney for Miller, asserted that the witness could not be believed.

He argued that the witness was said to be an accomplice and also had an interest to serve because he got rewarded to say what he did.

Samuels also told the jury, comprising six women and a man, that each time he caught the witness lying, he sought to explain himself.

“Fanciful excuses and excuses that don’t make sense. Throw them through the window,” he instructed the jury.

He told members of the jury that there was only one fair verdict: not guilty.

Samuels also told them that he knew that they were wrestling with the fact that André Bryan, also known as ‘Blackman’, had been acquitted of Chambers’ murder, but one of the jurors could be seen shaking her head in disagreement.

Earlier in the proceedings, Miller professed his innocence in an unsworn statement from the dock.

“I have never sent [the witness] or anybody to kill the JUTC man. I have never sent anybody to Cayman. I honestly swear that I don’t know nothing about this, and I am innocent,” he said.

He earlier denied knowing the witness, saying: “I don’t know [the witness]. First time I see him is when him come here, come court, to give evidence against me.”

Miller is on trial in the Home Circuit Court on charges of accessory before and after the fact to Chambers’ murder.

nickoy.wilson@gleanerjm.com