Monday 23 September, 2019

No bail for 120 days: Bail Bill passed with Opposition support

The controversial Bail (Amendment), Bill 2019 was passed without amendments in the House of Representatives on Wednesday night, with the support of the Opposition.

All 32 members present voted for the bill, which required a three fifths majority.

The Bail Bill seeks to deny bail for 120 days, to a person charged with a listed offence that is punishable for a term of imprisonment of ten years or more.

This includes firearm-related offences.

Attorney General Faris Al-Rawi, in piloting the bill noted that Trinidad and Tobago has seen an exponential growth in criminality coupled with an exponential success rate from the Trinidad and Tobago Police Service, within the last few years.

However, he noted that despite this success, society continues to battle with the same issues.

The Attorney General revealed that there were 638 gang related murders for the period 2015-2019 and 1679 firearm related murders for the same period.

There were 628 reported gang murders committed with firearms during 2015-2019, he said.

The AG also provided statistics to show that 6387 firearms were seized since 2019.

Al Rawi added that the People’s Partnership government benefitted from the Anti-Gang and Bail (Amendment) Bills during its tenure.

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