Sun | Apr 5, 2020

Not enough evidence, say defence attorneys

Published:Wednesday | February 26, 2020 | 12:17 AM

Defence attorneys yesterday continued making closing arguments on behalf of alleged King Valley Gang members, suggesting that the evidence brought against their respective clients was insufficient and that the Crown witness was not credible.

O’Neil Brown, the attorney representing accused Derval Williams, told the court that the Crown has not discharged its burden beyond a reasonable doubt.

He further said that the witness, a former member of King Valley, was on a self-preservation exercise, having made incriminating statements to the police in a question-and-answer session and testified in court to alleged offences carried out by himself and alleged gangsters.

Brown was making closing arguments in the trial of alleged members of the Westmoreland-based King Valley Gang at the Home Circuit Court in downtown Kingston.

During the trial, which began on January 14, it was said that the former gangster, who testified, had made a number of statements to the police.

The attorney said that the “proliferation of statements was to ensure that the witness had a role for everyone”, including his client.

Attorney-at-law Sean Osbourne, who represents accused Christon Grant, also made closing arguments, asserted that no consideration be given to sustain a conviction.

Osbourne also said that there was no independent evidence to suggest that Grant was part of a criminal organisation or that he was involved in criminal activity.

“The Crown has not created a good or sufficient nexus to convince a tribunal,” Osbourne said. “The evidence is weak and is incapable of sustaining a conviction.”

The trial, which resumed yesterday after a two-week break, will continue on Thursday when attorney-at-law Everton Bird, who is representing Copeland Sankey, will make closing arguments.

Williams, Grant, Sankey, Lindell Powell, Carlington Godfrey, and Rannaldo McKennis are on trial for breaches of the Criminal Justice (Suppression of Criminal Organisations) 2014, commonly called the anti-gang legislation, in relation to crimes committed between 2016 and 2018.

nickoy.wilson@gleanerjm.com