The Registrar of the Supreme Court issued the following notice about the functioning of the criminal division of the high court.
With the announcement by the Minister of Health on January 23, 2021 that community spread of the COVID-19 virus now exists in Barbados, the public is advised of the following with regard to the functioning of the Criminal Division of the High Court.
- All criminal matters set for January 27, 2021 will be heard on February 3, 2021; matters set for January 28, 2021 will be heard on February 4, 2021 and matters set for January 29, 2021 will be heard on February 5, 2021.
- All matters set for TRIAL BY JURY will be suspended until further notice. All accused persons who are to attend court in respect of these trials MUST attend court to be furnished with proposed new dates for the resumption of these trials.
- Arraignments set for hearing on February 1, 2021 and beyond will continue as usual and all accused persons on bail MUST attend court duly observing all relevant Covid-19 protocols. Those persons on remand to HMP Dodds will appear via Zoom hearing.
- All matters scheduled for sentencing hearings on February 1, 2021 and beyond will continue as usual with the accused persons on bail appearing in person and those on remand being facilitated by way of Zoom hearing.
- Bail Applications will be set for hearing commencing the week of February 8, 2021 and beyond. These will continue to be heard remotely via the prison link once this facility is available. In the event that this link is unavailable due to the current situation at the prison, it is proposed to hear these applications as soon as the link becomes available.
- All Maximum Sentence Indications (MSI) hearings will continue to be heard as scheduled.
- All pre-trial matters, inclusive of VOIR DIRE applications will continue to be heard as scheduled.
- Kindly note that all Zoom links to the above matters should be forwarded to counsel to facilitate their appearance remotely.