Hal Martin passes

Daily Nation (Barbados) - - News - By RACHELLE AGARD

BAR­BA­DIAN BUSI­NESS­MAN Hal Martin has died.

The hote­lier, who owned Re­gency Cove Ho­tel in Hast­ings, Christ Church, passed away in Cal­i­for­nia on Mon­day at age 68.

Busi­ness­man Mo­hammed Nas­sar yes­ter­day de­scribed the late ac­tivist and cru­sader for many causes as a stal­wart who would be sadly missed.

“The saviours of this coun­try are men like Hal Martin, who put ev­ery­thing on the line and chal­lenged the sys­tem to move black peo­ple for­ward, and paid a tremen­dous price for it.

“I am one who will sadly miss him,” Nas­sar said, as he re­lated how Martin used his con­tacts and in­flu­ence with busi­ness­peo­ple in Cal­i­for­nia, where he also lived and op­er­ated busi­nesses, to pro­vide re­sources for lo­cal black busi­ness­men.

“Bar­ba­dos has lost an­other stal­wart in the quest for a bet­ter deal for black busi­ness in Bar­ba­dos,” wrote Sen­a­tor John Wat­son on his Face­book page.

In ex­tend­ing con­do­lences to Martin’s fam­ily, pres­i­dent of the Small Busi­ness As­so­ci­a­tion, Dean Straker, wrote on Wat­son’s Face­book post: “I found him to be al­ways very pleas­ant and most in­for­ma­tive in the many meet­ings we sched­uled over the last ten years. The justice sys­tem in Bar­ba­dos seems to have failed Hal re­gard­ing his real es­tate. RIP Hal.” ( GC)

QC knocks long wait for trial dates

ON THE SAME DAY that Chief Justice Sir Marston Gib­son was hit­ting back at crit­i­cisms of de­lays in Bar­ba­dos’ justice sys­tem, a se­nior at­tor­ney was in court com­plain­ing about the time it took to se­cure trial dates for clients.

Speak­ing hours af­ter Sir Marston ad­dressed the is­sue of the back­log of cases in the crim­i­nal justice sys­tem at the open­ing of the new law term in Supreme Court No. 1 on Mon­day, Queen’s Coun­sel An­drew Pil­grim lamented that “there is no pro­vi­sion in this coun­try to get a speedy trial”.

He told the Bridgetown Traf­fic Court: “There are over 1 500 cases of this ilk [in­dictable of­fences] pend­ing in the Supreme Court, and only two judges to deal with them. One judge in that court has not done 15 cases to date.”

Pil­grim was mak­ing a sub­mis­sion on be­half of 24-year-old Niko Tris­tan Forde, of No. 27 Lukes Av­enue, Bayville, St Michael.

Forde and Dario Delisle Flatts, 20, of Block I2, Field Place, also in Bayville, are jointly charged with en­ter­ing the dwelling house of Len­nox Richards as tres­passers last Fri­day and steal­ing $300, while hav­ing a firearm.

The two, who were not re­quired to plead, ap­peared be­fore Act­ing Mag­is­trate San­dra Rawl­ins.

Prose­cu­tor Sta­tion Sergeant Car­ri­son Henry ob­jected to bail for both men on the ground that it was a se­ri­ous of­fence in which a firearm was al­legedly used, de­spite in­ves­ti­ga­tors not hav­ing re­cov­ered the weapon.

He also said both men were on bail from an­other court, and Flatts was known to the court for a sim­i­lar mat­ter for which he had been con­victed.

“Ma’am, it is clearly in­ad­e­quate for them to be re­manded,” Pil­grim ar­gued. “In the con­text of justice in Bar­ba­dos, five years is a long time to be wait­ing on a trial. I have clients on re­mand await­ing trial more than five years now. I also have clients on bail await­ing trial more than eight years now.”

He then in­vited peo­ple in the court to tell him of an in­dictable case that had come to trial be­fore five years.

Us­ing one of his cases as an ex­am­ple, he said if the ac­cused pleaded guilty in an ef­fort to fast-track the case, it could take as lit­tle as nine months to get the ball rolling.

“My un­der­stand­ing is the com­plainant in this mat­ter said he saw some­thing silver in the ac­cused’s hands. That

(cen­tre)

could be any­thing and can take five to 15 years to re­cover . . . .

“My client has ap­peared in court ev­ery time he has been re­quired to do so, and it tells me that he will do so when re­quired.

“He has a mat­ter pend­ing for throw­ing a big rock. He is not known to the court nor has been pre­vi­ously con­victed. There are hun­dreds peo­ple out on bail for more se­ri­ous mat­ters,” he said.

How­ever, the act­ing mag­is­trate did not agree with Pil­grim’s ar­gu­ments and de­nied bail.

“What con­cerns me is both are out on bail, and hav­ing com­mit­ted such an of­fence, I am not go­ing to grant them bail at this time,” she said be­fore re­mand­ing them to HMP Dodds.

Forde and Flatts are to re­turn to court on Novem­ber 9.

Woman owns up to car dam­age

AN UN­EM­PLOYED WOMAN yes­ter­day ad­mit­ted to dam­ag­ing a car on Septem­ber 1.

How­ever, Nikita Het­tie Maria Brath­waite, 26, of Year­wood Road, Black Rock, St Michael, pleaded not guilty to us­ing a Toy­ota Star­let with­out the con­sent of owner Aki­nola Grif­fith some­time be­tween Septem­ber 3 and 4.

She was granted $1 600 bail and or­dered to re­turn to the Bridgetown Traf­fic Court to­mor­row, when the com­plainant is ex­pected to give an ac­count of the dam­age.

SOME OF the dis­grun­tled work­ers at the Hast­ings, Christ Church site yes­ter­day. (Pic­ture by Alex Downes.)

HAL MARTIN (FP)

RE­MANDED: Niko Forde and Dario Flatts to HMPS Dodds. (Pic­ture by Christoff Grif­fith.) on their way

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