High Court grants injunction that ends investigation into Chief Magistrate and the operations of the St. John’s Magistrate Court

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Chief Magistrate Joanne Walsh/File Photo

REAL NEWS-Investigations into Chief Magistrate Joanne Walsh and the operations of the St. John’s Magistrates’ Court have come to an abrupt end following the ruling of a High Court judge.

Walsh had challenged an investigation commissioned by Hildred Simpson, Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Legal Affairs, which began on October 4, arguing that the PS had no authority to initiate the probe. The High Court has agreed.

On Monday, October 24, an interim injunction was granted by Justice Jan Drysdale, and a full injunction was granted today, Wednesday, October 26.

This means that the investigation, which was expected to wrap on November 3, comes to an end with immediate effect.

For the past three weeks, the investigating team had been meeting with, and interviewing, members of staff at the Magistrates’ Court. However, the team did not work this week, after the interim injunction was granted.

A source says the next court hearing between the parties will be judicial review proceedings in which Walsh will ask for damages.

This matter is set for early next year, allowing lawyers time to file all their documents, submissions and supporting case law before the matter is heard.

Attorney-at-law Ken Kentish represented Walsh in the matter, while the Attorney General’s Office was represented by Dr. David Dorsett.

Reportedly, Dorsett tried to convince the Court that the investigation was an administrative and not a judicial probe, therefore giving Simpson authority to launch it.

But a source says that any investigation into a Magistrate would have to be ordered by the Regional Judicial and Legal Services Commission.

By way of a letter dated September 27, and signed by Simpson, Walsh had been notified of the investigation, which covered four main areas, including the alleged verbal, physical, psychological and emotional abuse of the receptionist and staff, generally, at the Court.
The correspondence was sent to the Court while the Chief Magistrate was working in Barbuda.

Allegedly, Walsh never received the letter officially and found out about the probe through the media.

The three-member investigating team comprised Tourism Officer Dr. Adele Blair; Deputy Permanent Secretary Joseph Henry; and Principal Assistant Secretary Rita Phillip Harris.

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14 COMMENTS

  1. Sometimes I wonder who really gives legal advice to this government! This reminds me of something call Special Constables! This is just laughable

    • Many Decisions we Should REVOKE
      St JOHNS Magistracy. Lein. Dope
      15 grammes she JOKE
      4 🌴 🌴 🌴 🌴 Murder she WROTE
      Have US up & Down
      Like a Yo Yo.
      Up Down up Down
      Puppet on a.Stringe
      A Gradient A System Profiling
      Physical Scars Mental Scars
      Wounds Incised by Corrupt Partisans
      Time Cant Heal
      We Still Have not Concealed.
      The Indignation of Our Population.

      Put your Sue 💰
      In a one Sue Sue
      Mem u 💰 work for you CHARLIE kc

  2. Okay so the Chief Justice has to investigate verbal abuse between staff members in? The Chief Justice has to account for why all the gov’t recipt books are missing (criminal offence) which belong to the Governemnt of Antigua and Barbuda? The Chief Justice has to investigate cashing practices in a government office in Antigua. Did not know that office was responsible for government affairs in Antigua and Barbuda. Why do we even have a Prime Minister then? So the Judge is saying she can go work tomorrow and shoot everybody and if the Chief Justice too busy she just continue to siddung in the court room? Somebody help me understand this rubbish. So she can cuss everybody and tell them bout them mother, Chuck dem out the building, Bang dem with belt? So since she got away with a whioe crime destroying Gov’t documents if she bulldoze the building dung day…. the Chief Justice is the only person that can investigate that. Give me an aspirin.

  3. I just don’t know how anyone can think that Antigua is a real place
    We’re a couple of time wasters

  4. So this ruling is informing the public that no one in this country can hold it’s judges accountable? It has to come from a regional body?

    What we really about to celebrate next week?

  5. Jumbee_Picknee say…just one reason why, OBEAH plays such a significant role in the Nation’s Cuiture.

    And, according to Short Shirt, “when they have power, and authority, they don’t give a damn about nobody. Prostituting the island…prostituting the islands…prostituting the island…

    …Papa_Elegba and Mami_Wata,
    …I’m standing at the crossroad
    …of, Square and Swastika
    …with a bag of frogs, chicken and toads
    …ready, to work up some OBEAH!
    …plenty, plenty OBEAH.

  6. The former Minister of Toruism and sitting MP for St. Peter’s made a strong allegation that he is aware that this magistrate is involved in Bobol!!!! She went silent right after!!!!! What was the MP referring to. And this MP is known to be involved in some unsavory dealings!!!!

  7. It is time for this Magistrate to resign/retire. Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely. Is she corrupted? That is a matter for we the People to find out.

  8. Corruption at it highest. Now tell me how can we have faith and transparency in the justice system in the island. Anyone who knows about the court system would know that she is a vindictive woman. I personally believe that this matter should be taken further. Not because she’s in that chief magistrate position means she must do as she like to people and nobody can do anything about it.

  9. The public continue to lament, who was supposed to investigate the Magistrate’s Court that dismissed charges against -6- ALP members for breaching the Public Order Act, in February, 2011, when they appeared before that Court in October 2012.
    The ALP members were Sir Lester Bird, Honourable Gaston Browne, Asot Michael, and Paul Chet Greene. The other members were General Secretary Mary Claire Hurst and executive member Carlton Lake!!!!

    • @Vere Browne…
      …😅😅😅according to Mami_Wata and Papa_Elega,
      …two(2) out of three(3)
      …now, we’re only missing Pompey!
      …we know, he’ll appear with take
      …as, a former COP!
      …since, they all had to deal with
      …this, corrupt #Judiciary!
      …now, can the heavens send someone forthwith
      …to deal with all this bull*#}
      …’cause, as far as, the Public
      …knows, and has discerned
      …for, we have already learned
      …’this is just another day
      …with the same S#i+
      …we’re drowning in everyday.
      …no need for Papi to sound the Conch Shell
      …‘cause, to the wicked there’s no hell
      …but, blow Vere, 📣blow!
      …blow, blow, blow Wendell
      …Wendell, please blow! Blow! Blow!
      …’cause, the People really want to know
      …why, at times! The judiciary is like a #Pappt_Show.
      …now, Uncle Papi! You can blow! Blow!
      …blow, the Conch_Shell for so!

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