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Court rules in favour of Hewitt

Paul Henry

Wednesday, October 31, 2012    

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THE Full Court yesterday upheld the promotion of noted crime fighter Delroy Hewitt to the rank of senior superintendent, landing a blow to rights group Jamaicans For Justice (JFJ), which had sought to have his ascension rescinded.

The Judicial Review Court in April reserved judgement on a motion brought by JFJ following arguments from JFJ’s legal team for a reversal of Hewitt’s April 2011 promotion and counter-arguments from lawyers from the Attorney General’s Chambers.

Dr Carolyn Gomes, JFJ’s executive director, told the Jamaica Observer yesterday that the ruling would be appealed.

JFJ had challenged the decision of the Police Service Commission (PSC) to promote Hewitt, despite what the rights group said were allegations that, if taken into consideration, would have prevented his ascension.

During submissions in April, the group asked the court to quash the PSC’s order to promote Hewitt, who heads the tough St Andrew South Police Division. JFJ also asked for an order directing the PSC to reconsider the recommendation for the promotion.

According to the JFJ, the senior crime fighter — who once headed the Kingston Western Police Division — should not have been promoted because there is a list of more than two dozen allegations of wrongdoing against him.

JFJ brought the court action after writing to the PSC between 2009 and 2011, asking, to no avail, for the allegations to be investigated.

But the PSC legal team from the Attorney General’s Chambers argued that Hewitt’s promotion was lawful and done in accordance with the relevant guidelines.

The PSC’s legal team also argued that the complaints against Hewitt were looked into but that the decision was still taken to promote him, in accordance with the Police Service Regulations.

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