Saint Lucia’s Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP), Victoria Charles-Clarke, has proceeded on preretirement leave, saying she has served to the best of her ability and with a high level of professionalism and integrity.
“I must say that having served in this position for over 12 years, I think I have given it my best and I think the record speaks for itself as to my achievements and accomplishments,” Charles-Clarke said.
The DPP noted that during her tenure she presented thousands of cases while conducting ongoing training for Police Prosecutors and Investigators, while giving them daily advice on cases.
She disclosed that her job has been both very challenging and rewarding.
“I have accomplished quite a bit of what I had planned and I have been able to bring about quite a bit of initiatives and restructuring within the department,” Charles-Clarke asserted.
She recalled that as DPP she prosecuted some very difficult cases, some of which others before her had declined to take on.
Charles-Clarke said she was able to bring those cases before the courts – cases of murder, and was able to obtain convictions based on circumstantial evidence.
According to her, when she joined the service it was dealing with about one hundred cases a year, in 2009 the workload increased to 800 cases annually and at the moment stands at over 300 cases in the High Court.
“That does not include the number of cases in the Magistrate’s Court,” the DPP pointed out.
The DPP said with more staff, a lot of cases currently in the High Court would have been dealt with more expeditiously.
However she admitted that expediting cases was not only a function of her department, but of other agencies which also need additional resources, such as the court system and the police.
Charles-Clarke will be DPP until March, 2016.