By Tracey Khan – Drakes
[www.inewsguyana.com] – Another Magistrate was yesterday (Wednesday December 03) suspended indefinitely by the Judicial Service Commission (JSC) over two matters that date back a year ago.
iNews was informed that Magistrate Chandra Sohan was hauled before the JSC, allegedly without a proper hearing and suspended without being given an opportunity to defend himself.
iNews understands that an inquiry will be set up where the Magistrate will be given the opportunity to defend himself. However, no timeline was given by the JSC in this regard.
The matters that the Magistrate was suspended for relate to a domestic violence incident over which he presided. According to reports, a couple known to the Magistrate was brought before him on assault charges.
After the initial hearing, the matter was transferred to another Court; however, that Magistrate did not return to work on time and the matter was again brought before him [Sohan]. It was agreed by all parties that he would proceed with the case. However, after the ruling, the woman felt Sohan was too lenient towards the man and wrote to the JSC expressing her displeasure.
The JSC also dug up another one year old matter where Magistrate Sohan reportedly left the jurisdiction without permission following the death of his overseas based grandfather.
iNews understands that written permission was given by a high ranking official in the legal sector and he was told to proceed on his compassionate leave. Many in the legal fraternity are now questioning the timing of the JSC’s decision and believe that Sohan is being victimized by the system.
The Magistrate has reportedly appealed the JSC’s decision.
Only last week, controversial Magistrate Alex Moore was also suspended by the JSC indefinitely following allegations of inappropriate behavior made by an East Coast Demerara businesswoman.
It was Magistrate Moore who recently handed down a surprising five year suspended sentence to confessed drug trafficker, Leonard Bacchus; a decision which was heavily criticized by sections of the legal fraternity. The sentence means that the man will serve no jail time unless he is
Also, the Guyana Police Force yesterday expressed its concern at what it says is the “slap on the wrist” treatment given to persons convicted of Noise Nuisance by some Magistrates.