Court defers two cases

POSTED: 03/29/12 2:28 PM

St. Maarten – Judge Monique Keppels deferred two cases to next Thursday for two very different reasons on Wednesday. In one instance she was not personally ready to move forward and in the other she wanted to give the defendant one last chance to find a lawyer.

The first case against M.A.D. was threatening and the theft and subsequent sale of tires and rims. The final report on the theft and sale was only handed over by the public prosecutor on Wednesday. In the case of the threats D. had told his victim things like “You’re f***ing with the wrong man.”

Defense Attorney Geert Haartzman and D. both requested that the trial go ahead Wednesday.

“I don’t see the difference with the case file so let’s do this today because my client wants to finish this,” the lawyer said.

D. added, “I would like to get it over with today.”

After considering things briefly Judge Keppels said, “I think I am not prepared well enough and I want to be able to discuss the entire file, which also means the final report.”

The second case to be deferred was the trial of T.E.M. for break ins, theft and ill-treatment. He was in court some months ago already, but had no attorney. The judge gave him time to find one, but he claims he was not able to secure legal counsel until Tuesday when he got Shaira Bommel to agree to take his case. Bommel confirmed she was taking on the case by e-mail at 11:15 a.m. but informed the court that she would not be able to appear at 11:30 a.m.

The public prosecutor was not pleased at the delay saying that the defendant knows the legal system works because he’s been in trouble before.

Judge Keppels showed some leniency and set a new and final trail date of April 4.

“This is the very last postponement,” Keppels said.

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