OBSERVER Newsco: There will be another long waiting period before there is any progress in the murder case of high-ranking Customs official Nigel Christian.
Since April 2021, three men charged with killing Christian — Lasean Bully, 30, of Cashew Hill; Wayne Thomas, 28, of Hatton; and 30-year-old Saleim Harrigan of Greenbay — were remanded to Her Majesty’s Prison while they await their committal hearing.
Yesterday, the trio appeared before Ngaio Emanuel-Edwards in the All Saints Magistrate’s Court for the fifth time and the prosecution still wasn’t ready to proceed with the next stage of the case.
The prosecution requested that the committal be adjourned as they seek to disclose the final pieces of their file to the defence in 48 hours.
Wendel Robinson, who represents Thomas, objected to the adjournment and accused the prosecution of “window-dressing” — misleading the public to create a favourable impression — a claim he asserted at the most recent court hearing.
Andrew O’Kola, who represents both Bully and Harrigan, was not present to give his take on the matter; however, Robinson spoke for them both.
Robinson believes that the file should have been ready within six months.
He went as far as to ask the Magistrate to dismiss the case saying: “I think if the prosecution is not ready, dismiss the case, free the accuseds and then bring them back when they are ready.”
The magistrate said that while she sympathised with the defence, she will not be dismissing the case.
She instead gave counsel enough time to read the file and make submissions if they wished, so that on the next occasion, she could deliver a decision on the submissions and/or proceed with sending the matter up the High Court.
The defence has until June 27 to file their submission and the prosecution has until August 8 to respond.
The murder accuseds will return on August 24 for what should be their final hearing in the Magistrate’s Court.
On the afternoon of July 10 2020, Christian was abducted from his McKinnons home, and the 44-year-old’s bullet-riddled body was found in the Thibous area hours later.
Support Antigua Newsroom from as little as $5 – it only takes a minute. If you can, please consider supporting us with a regular amount each month. Thank you.