The Privy Council Tells Justice Herbert Volney his Ruling was Wrong in the Brad Boyce Trial
The Privy Council has ruled that High Court Judge Herbert Volney was wrong when he told a jury to return a not guilty verdict in the Brad Boyce trial seven years ago.
But despite the ruling Brad Boyce will not be rearrested.
The ruling was handed down by the Privy Council this morning and it comes after this country’s Director of Public Prosecution appealed Justice Volney’s decision to free Brad Boyce.
Brad Boyce was accused of manslaughter in the death of Jason Johnson.
Mr. Johnson was struck in the head during an altercation outside a night club in St. James in 1996.
In the trial Brad Boyce was represented by Karl Hudson Phillips Q.C.
The Privy Council questioned a number of the judge’s rulings noting that events then took an unusual course after the defence put its medical expert on the witness stand.
The Privy Council noted that Justice Volney, of his own motion, recalled pathologist Dr. Hughvon Des Vignes to ask him about his qualifications in forensic pathology.
The law lords said Justice Volney, still acting on his own accord, called chief pathologist, Professor Chandulal to ask him about the qualifications required for civil service appointment as a forensic pathologist.
Based on Dr. Chandulal’s testimony Justice Volney deemed the evidence of Dr. Des Vignes inadmissible and directed the jury to return a not guilty verdict.
The D.P.P. challenged the judges decision saying to exclude the evidence of Dr. Des Vignes was wrong in point of law.
The Privy Council agrees saying Justice Volney should not have called Professor Chandulal to the witness stand for the purpose of giving his opinion on the expertise of another witness.
Following the not guilty verdict seven years ago, Brad Boyce migrated to Australia.
The Privy Council says he must remain free because too much time had passed since the incident and much of the eyewitness testimony would now be unreliable.
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