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Court Visit

Presented in Partial Fulfilment
of the Requirements for the Course
MGMT341: Business Law

Lecturer: Mr. Felix Pearson

Onika Blandin
Student No. 2009060042

October 1st, 2014

One must admit that up to this point no attention was ever given to any systems of law let
alone Trinidad and Tobagos Judiciary. This assigned court visit was an opportunity for practical
experience real world applicability of descriptive and analytical components of the system of
law. During the month of September the differences and similarities observed in the criminal and
civil proceedings at the Tunapuna Magistrate Court and the Hall of Justice High Court, solidify
ones view on certain social and organisational issues such as bureaucracy, desensitisation of
personnel and permissible conducts.
The level of security and uses of technology at both courts such as scanners hand held
and stand alone; audio recording equipment and computers was a pleasant surprise. The security
and information desk personnel were curt; they informed persons as to what is expected for
attire, electronic devises and general behaviour. The ambiance was clean and comfortable. There
was an aesthetic apple that stood outside other government structures. Both courts had
established processes some geared toward delivering the outcome of resolution, while others
were clearly straight out of a colonial west minister scheme. The constant standing and bowing
of those present, as the assigned figure of authority or subordinate left or entered the room, also
the Magistrate or Judge was addressed as Your Worship and Your Lord. The outstanding regalia
of the stewards of justice had a European flavour. This brought pictures of men in white wigs to
mind and one wondering about the discomfort of such symbols of distinctions that fall under the
guise of respect, contributing to the somewhat submissive, frustrated and aloofness that
emanated throughout the proceedings.
Tunapuna Mistreat Court

In the criminal court facts were presented by lawyers with two sides to every case a
police prosecutor would present the facts in the majority of matters. In some minor cases there
were no lawyers or police, private individuals represented themselves. During one session the
magistrate called a defendant's name that was already in the holding area. She then called for the
facts to be read and an individual from the counsel stood and read one case at a time. While a
female registry, at the front of the room, record the information. After each case was read, the
Magistrate asked the defendant if he actually performed the acts expressed in the reading and the
defendants replied guilty. The magistrate then read the charges and the time period that the
accused and now charged had to serve. A mother and her son appeared; apparently this was some
sort of follow up hearing. Her Worship asked that reports be submitted. She issued another date
for both parties to return to court. In the case where a vehicle was sold without the owners
knowledge, and subsequently returned, as well as the misappropriated funds, a plea for dismal
was granted. The magistrate magistrate sits as judge and jury. On approaching the owner of the
vehicle she expressed gratitude as for the return of her vehicle but was unsatisfied and annoyed -
He was not adequately punished.
Hall of Justice Civil Court

Before Justice Dividers Rampersd, the proceedings initially were confusing. The fast
pace of what seemed to be a basic scheduling, updating and verifying exercise as each matter
was called briefly discussed and assigned dates. Justice Ramperd left the room and the various
attorneys assumed their positions Robin Montano (Lawyer) expressed his anger and frustration
to his colleges he keep saying It is so Stupid he seemed agitated.
During the hearing he expressed apologies for his inability to move on due the Town and
County clerk not preparing the need document in addition to her flippant attitude as to when it
would be done. He even coated her as saying Tell the Judge he might get it next week
sometime Justice Rampersad acknowledge the culture of disrespect within the civil services and
adjourned the matter to November 15 2014. There was also an instance in the case of Raymond
Lloyd Vs Zorida Maharaj where Mr. Lloyd was documented as being dead then the said Lloyd
stood up and announced that he was alive and well. The matter was adjourned and everyone who
was concerned with the matter exited the room.
Base on ones research The Civil Proceedings Rules (CPR) practice along with Case
Management Conference (CMC), shed light to my initially confusion, rooted in speeding up of
the judicial process from issue to determination, to the extent revealed by the pleadings and
documents therein disclosed are scrutinized by the judicial officer who may either encourage
parties to settle or instead provide extensive directions to ready the parties for trial or refer to
mediation .