Thursday, February 22, 2018

AG wins appeal in emergency sitting

The Appeal Court, after an emergency sitting yesterday, ruled in favour of Attorney Gen­eral Anand Ramlogan and dismissed an appeal brought by Amarnath Jagmohan, challen­ging his extradition to Singapore.

Ramlogan is currently in Mia­-

mi, Florida, USA, where he is leading a high-level delegation at the Caribbean Financial Action Task Force(CFATF) XXXIX Plenary Meeting at the Miami Hilton Conference Centre. He delivered the keynote address to the meeting on Wednesday.

A news release from the Attor­ney General’s office yester-

­day explained that Justice of Appeal Prakash Moosai sat in emergency session on the Indi­an Arrival Day public holiday to deal with the appeal from the decision of High Court Justice James Aboud, who had previously dismissed an application for leave to seek judi­-

cial review of Ramlo­gan’s decision. The court also ordered Jagmohan to pay the legal costs of the Attorney General.

Extradition proceedings were

commenced by the State before

Chief Magistrate Marcia Ayers-Ceasar, which Jagmohan contested. However, after seven months, the Chief Magistrate, ordered Jagmohan be committed to be extradited to Singapore.

Jagmohan filed an application for habeas corpus in the High Court, seeking to challenge the extradition order. He was represented by attorney David West and was successful in his application after Justice Carol Gobin ruled in his favour and quashed the decision of the chief magistrate.

Ramlogan immediately appealed Gobin’s decision and after an expedited hearing, the Court of Appeal overturned Gobin’s decision and reinstated the order of the Chief Magistrate. The Court of Appeal also ordered that Jagmohan pays the State’s legal fees for both the habeas corpus application and the appeal in relation the same.

The Appeal Court ruling there­after cleared the way for the Attorney General to issue the warrant for Jagmogan to be returned to Singapore.

The Attorney General however, in keeping with his commitment to be fair to persons awaiting extradition, wrote to West,

asking him to say why Jagmohan ought not to be extradited.

West responded and gave sev­eral reasons why his client

ought not to be extradited. How­ever, the Attorney General gave due consideration and deliberation to all of the reasons provided to his office, and he thereafter signed the warrant to return Jagmohan to Singapore, the news release said.

West thereafter sought judicial review of Attorney General’s decision. This application was heard before Justice James Aboud late on Tuesday evening, and around 9 p.m. on Tuesday night, the application was dismissed as being completely without merit and having no prospect of success.

West thereafter filed an appeal against Justice Aboud’s order and applied to the Court of Appeal in emergency application late on Thursday evening to

grant a stay of the extradition. This appeal was heard by Justice Moosai who reserved the decision of the court until yesterday

At around 3.30 p.m. yester­day, Moosai dismissed Jagmo­han’s application and he des­cribed the appeal as being completely without merit and doomed to fail. Moosai also ordered that Jagmohan pays the State’s legal costs fit for Senior Counsel, Junior Counsel and the instructing attorney. This ruling now clears the way for Jagmohanto be extradited to Singapore.

The AG’s office was represented by Pamela Elder SC and Jagdeo Singh and instructed by Zelica Haynes at both hearings. Jagmohan has to pay the State’s costs for all of the applications he made in the High Court.