Acting Director of Public Prosecutions Discusses the Roles and Responsibilities of the Office
Basseterre, St. Kitts, March 23, 2023 (ZIZ Newsroom)– The Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) is responsible for prosecuting all criminal matters within the Federation.
This is according to Acting DPP, Greatess Gordon-Hazel during her appearance on ZIZ radio’s programme “Policing with You” on Thursday.
She explained that the DPP is a constitutional post noting that this designation gives the DPP the power to take over criminal cases.
She stated, “The DPP is a constitutional post. It’s created by the Constitution and it gives the person holding the office the power to institute criminal proceedings and to take over criminal proceedings as well. You know, there are private criminal matters. The DPP also has the power to take over the private criminal matters if necessary. The DPP also has the power to discontinue matters as well.”
Gordon-Hazel also provided instances where the DPP will intervene in a private criminal matter.
“There are instances where people feel that they want to go through the process themselves without getting police or anyone involved and in those cases, they take the matter to the court from start to finish, and there may be cases where the DPP does not think that the matter should be in the court system, the DPP may choose to take over the matter and discontinue, or if it is one that he feels is of importance, then he will take it over. He or she will take it over and prosecute the matter.”
She also mentioned the composition of the DPP’s office which includes 21 staff members who are dispersed throughout the three districts.
“The DPP’s office is composed of 21 staff. Those 21 staff are distributed within three districts. District A, District B, and District C, District A is from Cayon coming to Basseterre, going down to West Farm, District B is from West Farm to Cayon in the other direction and District C is the whole of Nevis.”
Gorden-Hazel added that the staff consists of Crown Counsels, Police Prosecutors, Legal Research Officers, Witness Liaisons to the High Court, Administrative staff, and Orderlies.
“Policing with You” airs every Thursday at 9:30 am on ZIZ radio during the “Morning Show” with GCue.