After nearly one year on the run, murder accused Dwayne McDonald has finally appeared in a local court to answer the charge of murder in connection with the May 2023 death of Victor Randy McIntosh of Carriacou.
The sea captain was apprehended in Tobago just over a week ago and deported to Grenada over the weekend.
McDonald who is from the village of Mt Pleasant, appeared at the St. George No. 1 Magistrate’s Court this morning flanked by his lawyer Anselm Clouden who is also from the small ward island.
After the brief hearing, Clouden told reporters that because the offence happened outside of Grenada, the Mainland is not the proper jurisdiction to deal with the case.
“McDonald was brought into court to have a date set for the commencement of the Preliminary Inquiry. As we know this court has no jurisdiction to proceed with the Preliminary Inquiry because the alleged offence was committed in Carriacou so that the matter is adjourned to the next sitting of the Carriacou Magistrate’s Court (which) will be on the 16th February,” he said.
THE NEW TODAY understands that the Mt Pleasant resident who is now on Remand at the Richmond Hill prison will be transported to the sister isle for the conduct of the PI into the charge of murder.
The defense attorney notified the local media that he will be approaching the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) to make the necessary preparations for the murder trial to be heard in Carriacou itself.
“I made a submission today for the record. The occasion for the submission hasn’t risen, but I put it on record so that the Director of Public Prosecutions would not be taken by surprise. They would have ample time to review the application when it is made and the application is in essence to have a trial change of venue,” he said. According to Clouden, some challenges will arise in the selection of a jury to handle the murder case.
“…We are saying that it is difficult to see our jury could be properly constituted in Grenada of his peers – he having emanated from the island of Carriacou,” he said.
“We think in the interest of justice, there should be a change in the venue, and indeed that would be the application made on the indictment whenever that is affected or preferred.”
“…We have made an application that the trial should be held in Carriacou because the jury of his peers could be properly constituted there and the offence was created there,” he added.
The veteran attorney-at-law suggested that the matter should be held in Carriacou incorporating members of the Kayak community in the jury panel since the offence occurred on the island.
“…The Magistrate’s Court (in Carriacou) is in the police station and that distorts the perception of real justice.”
Clouden was also asked by reporters to give details of the circumstances in which McDonald was eventually nabbed by Trinidad police.
“I cannot speak to those circumstances because I haven’t discussed it with him and I’m not in a position to detail the nature of this apprehension. I just don’t know.”
Clouden revealed that the accused was deported and not charged in the twin island republic for entering the country illegally.
“…There was no charge in Trinidad and this is why there have been no extradition because his entry into Trinidad was not lawful. He entered contrary to the immigration laws, he was found as such in violation of the immigration requirement of legal entry. As a consequence, he was deported back to Grenada, so there were no charges against him.”
“He was not a fugitive from justice in that sense, he just unlawfully entered Trinidad, that he was apprehended there and deported to Grenada so there is no need for any extradition. He is no fugitive because he was not charged.”