i dont understand why u must always post polls n stuff then i gotta go search for the background info! i was so lost on this topic n i dont know if its in another post on here but it is not HERE! so i had google fill me in
'Tread carefully' - Law professor warns that 'Dudus' case has consequences
Published: Thursday | September 3, 2009
United States law-enforcement authorities are keeping a close watch on Jamaica as local justice officials react to a request for the extradition of reputed Tivoli Gardens strongman Christopher 'Dudus' Coke.
Other than a confirmation that the request for an extradition has been received, there has been no word from local authorities, including justice minister Dorothy Lightbourne, who is believed to have the request on her desk.
However, attorney-at-law and University of Miami professor, David Rowe, is cautioning the Bruce Golding administration to tread carefully as it addresses the request.
"There is a committee in the US Department of Justice that monitors these proceedings and watches for instances of obstruction of justice," Rowe told The Gleaner yesterday.
Rowe said that the US obstruction-of-justice statute had extra-territorial impact and could be used against any individual in Jamaica believed to be attempting to interfere in a judicial proceeding.
According to Rowe, the indictment against Coke could lead to other probes against individuals in Jamaica who might have been involved in criminal activity.
"I expect that Jamaica could soon be asked to extradite other high-profile figures, particularly in relation to a wharf, which is mentioned in the indictment," Rowe said.
"I believe the Grand Jury is enquiring into the wharf and the operation of Tivoli Gardens as a garrison, particularly in the post-2007 period."
In the nine-page indictment, US authorities allege that Coke provided guns to criminals after importing the weapons illegally through a wharf located adjacent to Tivoli Gardens.
The indictment describes the west Kingston community as "a barricaded neighbourhood guarded by a group of gunmen".
It further claims that from at least in or about 1994, members of Coke's organisation have been involved in drug trafficking in the New York area, Kingston, Jamaica and elsewhere.
In addition, the indictment lists dates on which Coke and his co-conspirators allegedly discussed the movement or sale of illegal drugs and firearms.
The US authorities also make it clear in the indictment that they would be going after Coke's assets if he is convicted.
However, the attorney representing Coke is downplaying the significance of the allegations contained in the indictment.
"We are not worried about it," Tom Tavares-Finson told The Gleaner on Tuesday, as details of the indictment were made public.
According to Tavares-Finson, Coke "has been his usual self - quiet and contemplative" - since the US Attorney, Southern District of New York, sent papers to Jamaica asking that he be sent to the US to stand trial.
"The press release, which was issued by the United States Attorney, Southern District of New York, at a time when it is understood that the Government of Jamaica is considering an extradition request, is clearly meant to prejudice the proceedings," Tavares-Finson said.
"His designation as a drug kingpin is obviously done with the same intention in mind. Show me the evidence. An indictment can be drafted by anyone. I need to see what the evidence is."