Levers tribunal change

Governor Stuart Jack has announced a small change to the terms of reference for the Judicial Tribunal that will investigate misbehaviour allegations against Grand Court Justice Priya Levers.

The terms of reference had previously asked the tribunal to consider allegations of misbehaviour against Justice Levers between August 2005 and April 2008.

An amended version of the terms of reference, released Monday, said the period was extended to run from August 2004 until June 2008.

In a statement, the Governor’s office said the change had been made following discussions with the tribunal, although no explanation was given for the date change.

Mr. Jack suspended the Mrs. Levers and formed the Judicial Tribunal 16 September. It has been asked to consider whether the judge’s conduct, manner and behaviour towards witnesses, attorneys, court staff and judges amount to misbehaviour, warranting her removal from office.

Privy Counsellor and former Lord Justice of Appeal, Sir Andrew Leggatt QC, will chair the tribunal. Sir Phillip Otton, also a privy counsellor and former lord justice of appeal, will also sit on the tribunal along with Sir David Simmons, the chief justice of Barbados.

The tribunal is expected to hold hearings for up to three weeks and had been asked to report back to Mr. Jack within three months.

Mr. Jack has sidestepped the question of whether the tribunal will sit in public, saying it is for the tribunal to decide how to conduct the investigation and what evidence, including oral evidence, it considers necessary.

While there is no precedent in the Cayman Islands for how a Judicial Tribunal should operate, recent ones in Trinidad and Tobago and Gibraltar have been open to the public.