BRIDGETOWN, Barbados, Sunday March 17, 2013 - All is in place for Monday’s sitting of the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) in Barbados to hear evidence in the case of Shanique Myrie, the Jamaican woman who took the Government of Barbados to court on allegations that she was assaulted by an immigration officer in 2011.
The CCJ will hear from Immigration department officials who came into contact with Myrie when she landed at the Grantley Adams International Airport in March 2011.
During the sitting of the court, the legal team representing the Government of Barbados will seek to prove that there was no cavity search of Myrie when she landed in Barbados just over two years ago.
“We will lead evidence to show there was no cavity search at all. That will be the most important testimony when the court is here in Barbados,” lead attorney Roger Forde told the Nation Newspaper on Saturday.
Alicia Jordan, an immigration officer at Grantley Adams International Airport when Myrie arrived from Jamaica, is expected to provide pivotal testimony in the case against the Barbados Government.
Forde said he was satisfied with how the case had gone so far and convinced the two days of testimony here would go a long way in vindicating the defendants.
Shanique Myrie, 25, was granted leave by the CCJ to file the action, alleges that when she travelled to Barbados on March 14, 2011 she was discriminated against because of her nationality, subjected to a body cavity search, detained overnight in a cell and deported to Jamaica the following day.
Myrie also claimed that she was subjected to derogatory remarks by a Barbadian Immigration officer and asked the CCJ to determine the minimum standard of treatment applicable to CARICOM citizens moving around the region.
On September 27 last year, Jamaica was granted leave to intervene in the matter.
Myrie, through her attorneys, informed the CCJ that she could not afford to bring her witnesses to Port-of-Spain for the hearing and therefore she was unable to adequately present her case to the Court.
The CCJ said that it had explored the use of videoconferencing technology to take the evidence of the witnesses, but after consulting with attorneys it was decided that the evidence should be given in person and for this purpose the Court .
The CCJ was established in 2011 to replace to London-based Privy Council as the region’s final court of appeal. It has both an original and appellate jurisdiction and also serves as an international tribunal interpreting the Revised Treaty of Chaguaramas that governs the 15-member Caribbean Community (CARICOM) grouping including the CARICOM Single Market and Economy that allows for free movement of within the grouping. (CMC) Click here to receive free news bulletins via email from Caribbean360. (View sample)