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Prisoner chaos as Marcia's cases put off

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Anger and violence erupted at the Port-of-Spain Magistrates Court this morning as criminal cases which were previously being heard by Chief Magistrate Marcia Ayers-Caesar came up for hearing.

Three men accused of murder — Nigel Mayers, Miguel Roberts and Nick Noreiga — had to be physically removed from the Port of Spain Eight Court after the began cursing and threatening police officers. 

Their case was among the 53 which must start afresh after the judicial fiasco where Ayers-Caesar was elevated to the High Court without completing her cases. She has since resigned from that post.

The decision to have the cases start afresh came from Chief Justice Ivor Archie. 

Archie made the order after a meeting with senior attorneys and the Director of Public Prosecutions Roger Gaspard and acting Chief Magistrate Maria Busby Earle-Caddle last week.

Today all matters were adjourned to be transferred and restarted before another magistrate. Before the men could get a new date, the began shouting that they were being treated unfairly.

One of the prisoners detailed the inhumane conditions at the remand prison. Another began cursing saying he would rather be killed. 

The court chaos flowed over to the prisoners' cell and prompted and swift response from police. The unruly prisoners were dragged from court as they shouted obscenities to Earle Busby-Caddle and the police. 

Attorneys seated in court left swiftly as the men became agitated. The cases were adjourned to June 27 in their absence. 

The men along with other prisoners continued their shout objections to their matters having to restart and as a result were ushered out of the courthouse with expediency cursing and shouting freedom as the left in an Amalgamated prison bus. 

Police cordoned off St Vincent Street as they prisoners were loaded and chased members of the media away from the scene.


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