Convicted killer released after 2 decades in prison
By JADA LOUTOO Tuesday, July 17 2012
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NOT YET: Justice Alice Yorke-Soo Hon, who in 2006, reviewed Alleyne's sentence and ruled he was then not yet ready to be released into society....
CONVICTED juvenile killer Sean Alleyne was yesterday ordered to be immediately released from prison after serving 20 years for a murder he still maintains, he did not commit.
Alleyne was 16 years old when he shot and killed 21-year-old Roger Lloyd on March 4, 1994, at Second Caledonia, Morvant.
He was convicted for the murder in 1997, but because of his age at the time he committed the crime, he was not read the death sentence, but detained at the State’s pleasure in accordance with provisions of the Children’s Act.
At a sentencing review in 2006, Justice Alice Yorke-Soo Hon held that Alleyne was not ready to be re-integrated into society, and ordered him to serve a minimum term of 20 years, starting from the date of his conviction.
Yorke-Soo Hon also ordered that Alleyne’s detention was to be reviewed every three years. His final review came up before Justice Andre Mon Desir, who yesterday ordered his immediate release from prison, having served a little over the 20 year jail term which expired on February 29, 2011.
In his ruling, Mon Desir said it was for him to determine whether Alleyne, now 34, posed a risk to society to legally justify his continued detention.
The judge said he found the argument of Alleyne’s attorney Gerald Ramdeen, that the State had no power to ask the court to forever incarcerate his client because of their fears of the future to be persuasive.
Mon Desir said notwithstanding the nature of the offence, the fact that a life was lost and a family affected, there was nothing in the reports presented to the court to show that Alleyne posed a risk to society.
He did note the concern of the prison authorities that Alleyne failed to become literate or involved himself in rehabilitative programmes while incarcerated.
“ In my view, literacy or lack of it, cannot be a pre-requisite for the re-entry into society or says anything about being a risk to society. There are many literate persons in society who are nothing but wolves in sheep clothing, who threaten the integrity of society,” the judge said.
Mon Desir also said that Alleyne still maintained his innocence was a matter for his conscience, and was between him, and his God.
“He was afforded due process, was duly sentenced and served his term. There is no legal basis for his continued detention,” the judge ruled.
In ordering Alleyne’s release, Mon Desir attached several conditions to his order that he must sign a bond for $10,000 and keep the peace for five years; he must reside with his aunt Marcelena Sookram-Bynoe, a minister of religion, at 11 Sawmill Avenue, Barataria, for two years to allow for his re-integration into society; report to the Barataria Police Station, twice per week, on Mondays and Wednesdays between the hours of 6 am and 6 pm; be placed under the supervision of a Probation Officer for five years; he must report to the Probation Officer twice per month for his performance to be monitored; undergo counselling at the National Family Services Division, or a suitable institution; return to court on November 2, 2012, to provide an update on his progress at which time the probation officer’s report will also be provided. Addressing Alleyne, Mon Desir told him he had a fresh and new opportunity given to him.
“Use it wisely. Many are not as fortunate to have a second chance. Let the second-half of your life be better than the first,” he said, as he urged Alleyne to prove to everyone that he really belonged in the society, as well as, do right by his family who stood behind him throughout the years of his incarceration. Just before he was led out of the Port-of-Spain First Criminal Court to be taken back to the Port-of-Spain prison before being released into his aunt’s care, Alleyne’s soft reply to the judge was “Have a blessed day, Sir.”
Sabrina Dougdeen represented the State at the re-sentencing hearing.