Dudus investigation launched

The commission of enquiry into the
issues surrounding the extradition of former west Kingston strongman
Christopher ‘Dudus’ Coke is underway.

The $40 million dollar
investigation is focusing on the events which led to Coke’s extradition to the
United States on 24 June, about 10 months after the request was made by the US
for him to face drug and gunrunning charges.

The delay in his extradition
involved the hiring of the law firm Manatt, Phelps and Phillips which claimed
it was representing the Government in treaty matters.

However, the Government has
insisted that the firm was representing the Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) and not
the administration.

More than 70 people were killed in
fierce gunfights between members of the security forces and gunmen loyal to
Coke, when the state entered Coke’s Tivoli Gardens stronghold to arrest him
last May.

In October, Prime Minister Bruce
Golding established the commission in response to pressure from the opposition
People’s National Party (PNP) and interest groups.

The enquiry is being chaired by
attorney-at-law Emil George.

Attorneys-at-law Hugh Small and
Sherry-Ann McGregor are representing Prime Minister Bruce Golding at the
hearings.

Attorneys K.D. Knight and Patrick
Anderson, instructed by opposition spokesman on justice, A.J. Nicholson, are representing
the PNP.

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