Quashed ‘passport case’ remains a matter of interest, as it raises questions about integrity of travel document

The recent quashing of the “passport case” will have far-reaching
implications for Antigua and Barbuda if the matter is not re-filed,
says attorney Leon Chaku Symister, since it will create issues about
the authenticity of this country’s travel document.
Given that two persons were indicted for allegedly producing false
passports – and might have been selling them to certain non-citizens
– this creates a case of interest, Symister says. And the situation is

being monitored by other countries across the region and even on
the international scene.
While Symister is optimistic that the acting Director of Public
prosecutions (DPP) will re-file the case for a jury trial, he says the
actuality will demonstrate whether the Office of the DPP truly is
He adds that the people will see whether the political directorate
will interfere with the DPP, who is a “creature of the Constitution.”   
Meanwhile, the attorney alleges, members of the political
directorate had attempted to get the charges against Ray John, a
suspended police superintendent, and Shakema Charles, a former
employee of the Passport Office, dismissed.

Attorney-at-law Leon Chaku Symister.
After hearing evidence for over three weeks in the judge-alone trial,
Justice Tunde Bakre agreed with the defence that he had no
jurisdiction to hear at least two of the indictments with regard to

So, on March 5, the case was dismissed.
Conspiracy is not among the list of charges for which a judge has the
legal authority to hear the case without a jury.
On this basis, Hugh Marshall, Jr. and Michael Archibald, attorneys for
the defendants, made a successful no-case submission.