Court of Appeal to make decision on killers Monday

| 25/11/2010

(CNS): Following overtwo days of arguments regarding the murder conviction of Kirkland Henry and Larry Ricketts the three appeal court judges will announced their decision on the safety of the convictions on Monday. The two men who were found guilty of the murder of Estella-Scott Roberts in February of this year by the Chief Justice following a judge alone trial. The two men between them brought nine grounds of appeal suggesting the country’s top judge had either misdirected himself in his written verdict or had erred in judgment. After the submissions from the convicted killer’s QC’s Cheryl Richard QC, the solicitor general defended the CJ’s ruling saying there was no miscarriage of justice. (Photos Dennie Warren Jr, left Henry – below Ricketts)

She told the Cayman Islands Court of Appeal that based on the strength of the evidence the trial judge had satisfied himself that the men were guilty and the convictions were safe. “The CJ carefully addressed his mind to the issues,” Richards said as she highlighted the judge’s deliberations.

One of the main issues argued by Henry’s defence counsel was that he had never been part of a joint enterprise to kill despite pleading guilty to abduction, rape and robbery. When the murder happened he withdrew from the crime and Scott-Roberts had died at the hand of Ricketts, he claimed.

However, Cheryl pointed out that even if the goal had never been to murder, Henry had shared the spoils of the crime by taking her phone, laptop and sharing the cash found in her bag and had done nothing more than claim to walk a little away from the scene of the murder. She said that Henry remained very much part of a continuing and evolving criminal enterprise which ended in the murder of Scott-Roberts.

She also argued that the confession given by Ricketts to the police could not have been concocted as the appellant claimed and pointed to the CJs deliberations on the issue. Richards explained that Ricketts had taken the stand meaning that it was not just the evidence from two police officers about the interview that the judge had considered but evidence and the behaviour of the defendant as well, when he drew the conclusion that the interview was genuine and Ricketts had “resolved to make a clean breast of it,” as the judge had revealed in his ruling. Richards said there was nothing to suggest that the judge’s findings were in any way unreasonable.


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