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Attorney-General Wilkin seeks to modernize the federation’s criminal justice system and laws

Basseterre, St. Kitts (SKNIS): The Honourable Garth Wilkin, Attorney-General of the Federation of St. Kitts and Nevis, stated that a primary objective of his tenure is to modernize the nation’s Criminal Justice System and Criminal Laws.

During his appearance on the radio and television show ‘InFocus’ on November 22, the attorney-general discussed ‘Revolutionizing the Criminal Justice System in St. Kitts and Nevis’ along with the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP), Adlai Smith.

Honourable Wilkin said much like a constitution that evolves and adapts to societal changes, criminal laws too should be dynamic, reflecting technological advancements and the evolving nature of criminal activities. It’s essential for the laws to keep pace with the times.

“We have a lot of 19th century laws on our books and it’s time, with the help of the DPP’s Office, to try to modernize our laws and so we have good, strong laws and a strong system to be able to prosecute offenders under those laws,” said the attorney-general.

The Director of Public Prosecutions used the DNA legislation as an example of the laws that should be modernized.

“Your DNA legislation doesn’t allow for a prosecutor to apply for a court order compelling the person to give the DNA so the result is that if the person says no then all you have is an inference to be drawn of guilt from the jury if they so decide,” said DPP Smith. “The advantage of when you have the court order to compel the taking of the DNA is that you now have the DNA on file so that if that person comes out of prison and commits further offenses you have a DNA profile with which to compare.”