World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 


Jamaica: the killing of the Braeton Seven


Jamaica: the killing of the Braeton Seven: it is time for concrete actions

One year after the Coroner's Court verdict on the police killing of seven young men in Braeton -- on 14 March 2001-- the office of the Director of Public Prosecutions has yet to announce a decision on whether the officers involved are to be charged with any offence. "Enough time has passed to evaluate the overwhelming evidence that the seven were extrajudicially executed," Amnesty International said today, "this seems to be another example of the authorities' unwillingness to prosecute police officers for unlawful killings."

Previously, the Director of Public Prosecutions had publicly stated he would make a decision once he had the depositions from the Coroner's Court. These were supplied to him at the end of June 2003, and would have provided little, if any, new information on the case, yet no decision has been forthcoming.

"The office of the Director of Public Prosecutions appears to be suffering from paralysis in the case of the Braeton Seven, as so often happens in cases of alleged unlawful killings by police officers. Even the urging of the Attorney General to make a decision or his own freely given commitments to a time frame do not produce any action," Amnesty International added.

The inexcusable delay in this case is in sharp contrast to the reaction in that of other high profile crimes. In April 2001, one month after the killing of the Braeton Seven, attorney Shirley Playfair was brutally slain. Those responsible had been identified, charged, tried, convicted and imprisoned by 10 April 2003. In Braeton, it has not even been decided whether charges are to be brought.

"The contrast between Braeton and other high profile killings like that of Shirley Playfair speaks volumes about the authorities' willingness to see police officers accused of unlawful killings stand trial." Amnesty International said "It also reinforces the suspicion that there is lack of political will to hold the police to account."

Despite an average of 140 killings by police officers every year -- many of them in circumstances strongly suggesting extrajudicial executions -- not one police officer has been convicted of a murder committed while on duty since 1999.

Amnesty International urges the Director of Public Prosecutions to immediately announce the prosecution of the officers responsible for the killing of the Braeton Seven.

"This incident has caused debate and uncertainty in Jamaican society. There is ample evidence of unlawful police action to present before a jury. It is time to remove the uncertainty and to forcefully present that evidence to a jury of Jamaican citizens." Amnesty International concluded.

BACKGROUND

The Braeton Seven -- aged between 15 and 20 -- were killed by police officers on 14 March 2001. The police claim to have come under "heavy fire" from the seven, but members of the local community stated that they were killed one at a time after being captured by the police. The accusations of unlawful killings were supported by strong evidence at the crime scene.

On 3 October 2002, the jury at Coroner's Court Inquiry into the killing of the Braeton Seven returned a split decision (6-4) that no one was criminally responsible for the deaths of the seven. However, the jury had not heard much of the vital evidence that the police were lying after a flawed legal process.

The Jamaican authorities continually refuse to bring police officers accused of unlawful killings to account. The charging of officers is almost unheard of and trials even rarer.

For more information on the Braeton Seven, please see: "Jamaica: The killing of the Braeton Seven: A justice system on trial"

http://amnesty-news.c.tep1.com/maabv7Xaa0ZONbb0hPub/

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Release Of 200 Nigerian Girls Held Captive By Boko Haram

UN envoy Gordon Brown welcomes release of 200 Nigerian girls held captive by Boko Haram More>>

Ban Calls For Immediate End To Hostilities In Northern Mali

Chadian UN peacekeepers heading to their base in Tessalit, northern Mali. Photo MINUSMA/Marco Dormino More>>

New UN Special Envoy On Ebola Response Visit To Sierra Leone

29 April 2015 – The United Nations World Health Organization ( WHO ) today said that surveillance and community engagement still require improvement in some areas of Guinea and Sierra Leone where new cases continued to surface, a day after the ... More>>

Somalia Registers Record Export Of Livestock In 2014

Somalia registers record export of livestock in 2014 due to trade boost with Gulf States More>>


United States: Riots In Baltimore – National Guard Sent In [graphic Images]

Riots have broken out in Baltimore following the funeral of Freddie Gray, a 25 year old black man who died from injuries sustained while in police custody. More>>

West Papua: “Lest We Forget”

AS Anzac approaches and Australians and New Zealanders remember those who fought and lost their lives on Anzac Day, it is hoped we will also remember the unfree people of the Pacific region and in particular those who are still suffering from human ... More>>

Iran: 81 Executions In One Week

Coincident with mass executions in the prisons of Ghezel-Hessar, Karaj and other cities, the anti-human regime of mullahs sent 16 other prisoners to the gallows in Mashhad and Birjand (northeastern Iran). Twelve of them were hanged collectively ... More>>

Al-Shabaab: Four Unicef Staff Killed In Somalia

Four UNICEF staff members have been killed in an attack on their vehicle in Garowe, Somalia. Four other UNICEF colleagues are in a serious condition. The IED (improvised explosive device) attack occurred when the staff were travelling from their guest ... More>>

UN: Suicide Attack In Jalalabad Condemned

NEW YORK/KABUL/GENEVA (18April 2015) – “I strongly condemn the brutal suicide attack that coincided with my visit to Jalalabad today,” said United Nations Assistant Secretary-General for Human Rights Ivan Šimonović during his visit to Afghanistan. ... More>>

Save The Children: STC Urges EU Leaders To Act To Prevent More Mass Drownings

Save the Children Urges EU Leaders to Act to Prevent More Mass Drownings at Sea. More>>

ALSO:

Japan: Independent Experts Slam Japan’s New Whaling Plan

Independent experts slam Japan’s new whaling plan and declare no more whales need to be killed for Antarctic research More>>

Gaza Strip: Attacks In The Border Areas

Following disengagement from the Gaza Strip in September 2005, Israel unilaterally and illegally established a so-called “buffer zone”, an area prohibited to Palestinians along the land and sea borders of the Gaza Strip. The precise area designated by ... More>>

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
World
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news