New Penal Code provides stiffer penalties for traffic fatalities

POSTED: 05/16/11 12:09 PM

Mos: “We could not detain him any longer”

St. Maarten – Chief Public Prosecutor Hans Mos said on Sunday that the “public uproar” over the circumstances that led death of 12-year-old Silvia Lynch will be answered with the introduction of a new penal code. Lynch died May 6 after being hit by a truck and many are upset that the driver is free from pre-trail detention and there have been calls to change the punishment for a traffic fatality from two years to six years.
Speaking on Radio Soualiga 99.9 F.M.’s For the Record with Eddie Willians Mos said that the new penal code takes the punishment from two years to four years if a person’s guilt can be established. If there is sufficient evidence that the driver was reckless, the sentence climbs to six years and if there are additional circumstances, like the driver being drunk, the sentence climbs to nine years. These stiffer penalties means the suspect could also be held in pretrial detention longer.
“We could have kept him if the new Penal Code and Code of Criminal Procedure was in place, but according to the current code we could not detain him any longer,” Mos said.
While he understands the emotion that is permeating the community and his office “very seriously regrets what happened” Mos is committed to the procedures laid out in law as the investigation continues.
“We are moved by what happened and this was probably a crime in a traffic situation. We will only be able to determine guilt once we wrap up the investigation. From what we have seen so far this was not done on purpose so we have to deal with this as a crime in traffic type of situation,” Mos said.
The public prosecutor said he informed the Minister of Justice Roland Duncan of the stiffer penalties on Friday and said that parliament could serve the current calls for the stiffer punishments by approving the new penal code. The documents had already been handed to the Parliament of the Netherlands Antilles, but that body chose to pass the law on to the new countries.

Did you like this? Share it:
New Penal Code provides stiffer penalties for traffic fatalities by

Comments are closed.