Wounding conviction lost despite guilty pleas

| 04/01/2021 | 18 Comments
Cayman News Service

(CNS): Prosecutors watched a man who had admitted charges of GBH walk free from court recently when a conviction was lost after the crown pushed for the case to go to trial. Geoff Ryan Scott was found not guilty by a judge in November as a result of a legal loophole, even though he stabbed a man in the neck in a drunken brawl. Scott pleaded guilty in relation to the attack to a lesser offence than the one charged by the crown, which was turned down.

Scott admitted the stabbing, but rather than accept a charge of wounding GBH he admitted to the slightly lesser offence of unlawful wounding. But the crown chose to pursue the more serious charge at trial, given the serious nature of the attack.

Scott and his victim had been drinking together in East End and Bodden Town. However, in the early hours of 26 February, Scott appears to have turned on his drinking companion and in an unprovoked attack cut his neck.

But as the trial approached, the victim withdrew his statement and told prosecutors he had no desire to testify or take part in the trial. As a result the crown had to withdraw the charges. But with a previous guilty plea already on file, the court sought to examine what appeared to be a legal loophole more closely before allowing the crown to have the case closed and the charges dropped

Justice Cheryll Richards wondered how it was possible that prosecutors could drop the charges when th,e man had made an admission that was recorded in the Grand Court.

The case was referred to Justice Roger Chapple, who said that he, too, in the first instance “wondered how and why the crown could offer no evidence on an offence to which there had been a guilty plea”.

But according to the final ruling the judge said that it was correct that once prosecutors rejected that plea in favour of trial, the plea no longer existed because two pleas cannot exist to the same charge at the same time.

See the judge’s ruling in the CNS Library

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Category: Courts, Crime

Comments (18)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    This sort of thing really does bring criminal procedure here into utmost disrepute.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Please keep in Grand Cayman with is family there.

  3. Anonymous says:

    If only there was a way where they could have taken the plea to the lesser offence and then preserved that whilst proceeding on the more serious one.

    Oh wait, there is, if you know basic criminal law.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Cayman administration lol

  5. Anonymous says:

    He got very lucky!

  6. Anonymous says:

    Geoff we all know of the significant problems in your upbringing. May God Bless you going forward.

  7. Anonymous says:

    What the actual eff? 🤬

    • Anonymous says:

      He was prepared to cop a plea to a lesser charge, but the Crown turned him down and threw the dice. But their case collapsed before trial. They gambled, they lost. Same thing cuts the other way – if the prosecution offers you a lower charge and a reduced sentence in exchange for a guilty plea, you can accept it , or gamble. In this case the Crown’s gamble failed.

    • Anonymous says:

      This is BS. He nearly murdered the other guy

    • Anonymous says:

      Our judicial system is a pile of EFFERY

      • Anonymous says:

        System – a set of principles or procedures according to which something is done; an organized framework or method.

        Does this sound like what goes on here? There is no system.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Doesn’t Cayman have trial subpoenas? Drag the witness to court and put the questions to him. The outcome can’t be worse.

  9. Anonymous says:

    The DPP strikes again!

  10. Anonymous says:

    What a cluster****!

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