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Munroe challenges Bail Act

  • Wayne Munroe.

Guardian Senior Reporter

Published: Aug 04, 2017

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Attorney Wayne Munroe yesterday filed a constitutional motion challenging certain provisions of the Bail Act and indicated that he intends to seek damages for former Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) Cabinet Minister Kenred Dorsett who was recently held in prison overnight.

Munroe made the application during the bail hearing of former PLP Cabinet Minister Shane Gibson.

Gibson was charged in a magistrate’s court with 36 counts of various charges, including extortion and bribery.

He appeared before Supreme Court Justice Cheryl Grant-Thompson about an hour later and was granted $40,000 bail with two sureties.

As it relates to the constitutional motion, Munroe said he is challenging section 4.3 (a) of the Bail Act.

Munroe said that section of the act removes the jurisdiction of magistrates to grant bail in certain circumstances.

“We will also be seeking damages for Kenred Dorsett because he was remanded overnight,” he said.

That matter was adjourned to September 19 at 9:30 a.m.

Last month, Dorsett was charged with four counts of extortion, four counts of bribery and one count of misconduct in public office.

He was remanded to the Department of Correctional Services where he spent one night behind bars.

Dorsett was granted bail the next day.


Political death


During his arguments in favor of Gibson’s release, Munroe said the former Golden Gates MP is innocent.

“David Shane Gibson is well known in The Bahamas,” Munroe said.

“We say, as he says, that he is innocent. This case will be brutally litigated in these courts.”

He said Gibson is “not a flight risk”.

Attorneys from the Office of the Attorney General did not oppose Gibson receiving bail but did ask that he surrender his travel documents and that his bond be a significant sum.

But Munroe cited a case where a man accused of murder was granted $30,000 bail.

“It is stretching it to say that he (Gibson) is a flight risk,” Munroe said.

“You get no higher in the system than murder. Aside from bringing about his political death, these counts do not come close to murder.”

Justice Grant-Thompson granted Gibson $40,000 bail with two sureties. Gibson did not have to turn over his travel documents.

She ruled that Gibson is “not a flight risk and the court would not impose any travel restrictions” on him.

Gibson was also ordered not to interfere with any witness for the prosecution in the matter.

Justice Grant-Thompson also noted that the court did not feel it was necessary for Gibson to report to police.

A few dozen supporters and relatives waiting outside court cheered as Gibson limped out of court on crutches a short while later.

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