The Jamaican Bar Association v The Attorney General and the General Legal Council

Case Number: 
2014 HCV 0772
Neutral Citation: 
[2017] JMFC Full 02
Date of Delivery: 
04.05.2017

The Charter of Fundamental Rights and Freedoms (Constitutional Amendment) Act, 2011– Whether the Regime infringes sections 13(3)(a),(c), (j) and (r), 14(2)(d), 16(1), (2) and (6)(c) of the Charter – The Proceeds of Crime Act, 2007, as Amended – Whether the reporting obligations imposed on attorneys by sections 94 and 95 breaches attorney/client privilege, legal professional privilege,
the principle of confidentiality between attorney and client and creates a conflict of interest without any safeguards that may be justified in a free and democratic society-whether the provisions are unclear, uncertain and unambiguous and therefore incapable of application – Whether the reporting obligations creates a situation of divided loyalty and loses sight of the fiduciary role and capacity of attorneys in regards to their clients – Whether the tipping off provisions as contained in section 97 mandates attorneys to engage in an act of disloyalty and has thereby transformed them into agents against their clients – Whether the Regime engages the liberty interests of attorneys and clients in a manner that infringes section 13(3)(a) – Whether the application of POCA, as amended, to attorneys is inconsistent with the integral and essential role of attorneys in the proper administration of justice and the maintenance of the rule and infringes on the independence of the bar – Whether the powers of the second defendant to examine and take copies of information or documents in the possession of attorneys infringes s. 13(3)(j) – Whether the entry of the second defendant onto attorneys premises is warrantless and without lawful authority – Whether the entry of the second defendant onto attorneys’ premises and the mandatory compliance of the attorney, who is faced with the threat of imprisonment, constitutes prima facie infringements of sections 13(3)(a) and (j) of the Charter – Whether the obligation to keep records pursuant to the regulations breaches the duty of confidentiality, creates a conflict of interest and  fundamentally breaches the attorney’s duty of fidelity owed to the client – Whether any infringement is demonstrably justified in a free and democratic society
 

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