LAWYERS VIEW MAGISTRATE’S ORDER TO REMAND A SICK CHOKSI AS LACKING HUMANITY, AND WILL MAKE AN APPEAL TO THE HIGH COURT
Lawyers for Mehul Choksi will be seeking a High Court order to stop the Dominica police from remanding the 62-year-old man to prison there.
According to a report in the Dominica News Online (DNO), Magistrate Pearl Williams made the order to have Choksi remanded in spite of his failing health.
The embattled Indian businessman has been hospitalized since May 29 at the Dominica-China Friendship Hospital, where he is receiving treatment for mental stress, high blood pressure and reported bleeding on the brain.
His trial for illegal entry into Dominica should have commenced on June 14, but a medical certificate submitted to the court indicated that he was not well enough to stand trial.
Due to Choksi’s deteriorating health, his attorneys said he was unable to attend court on Thursday, June 17, when he was expected to be remanded.
Nevertheless, Magistrate Williams ordered that he be remanded at the State Prison, saying she does not have the jurisdiction to remand him to the hospital every three days, as was earlier proposed.
Choksi’s lawyers were displeased with the court’s decision and said it was appalling, given the man’s reported bleeding in the head.
They expressed the opinion that “there must be a certain level of ‘humanity’ in how the court operates and everyone should be treated fairly.”
Reportedly the Magistrate is making arrangements for the Court to visit the hospital and facilitate Choksi’s transfer to the prison.
He has been remanded until June 24, and his trial is set for the following day, June 25. Choksi has pleaded not guilty to the charge.
In the meantime, his habeas corpus application to the High Court is still awaiting resolution and has been adjourned sine die (sigh-na die).