FIVE cops from the Mount Salem Police Station, who were in 2009 retired in the public interest over allegations that they were involved in the lottery scam, have been ordered reinstated by the Supreme Court.
Inspector Melvin Dennis, Sergeant Anthony Cunningham, and constables Garfield Blackeller, Shawn Baker and Roy Ford Lee were ordered reinstated with full salary and benefits by Justice Kirk Anderson, who ruled on Friday that their case be remitted to the Police Services Commission (PSC) for hearing again.
The PSC had ruled that the men be retired following hearings that were set in train by allegations from Courtney Grayson who had been arrested in Montego Bay for impersonating the police. Grayson, who was arrested after six months working with the Montego Bay police, had given a statement in which he alleged that the men were involved in the pervasive, billion-dollar lotto scam.
Grayson had also alleged that the men knew that he was not a police officer and that he was used in the scam.
The five policemen were among 18 others who were retired in 2009 as a result of the allegations. The Supreme Court has since ordered the reinstatement of some of the men.
The case against Grayson was subsequently dropped after the prosecution entered a nolle prosequi.
Following their retirement, the men, through their attorneys Usim Williams and Deon Meyler-Reid, sought a judicial review of the PSC's decision.
Arguments were made in the Supreme Court last Thursday and Friday, including that the men's rights to natural justice had been breached. It was further submitted that the men were denied a fair hearing, in that they were not served with Grayson's full statement, as required, for them to formulate proper responses and that reports of their full antecedents weren't provided to the PSC by the police commissioner.
In handing down his ruling on Friday, Justice Anderson agreed that the PSC had erred in law by not following proper procedures in conducting the hearing.