High Court judge reprimands Dominican journalists
Tweet 1292 Views no discussions Share Share LocalNews High Court judge reprimands Dominican journalists by: – January 16, 2012 Share Justice Brian Cottle. High Court Judge Brian Cottle has issued a strong reprimand to Dominican journalists in light of a local station’s broadcast of an audio recording of the Court’s ruling in a dual citizenship trial involving the prime minister and the education minister on Tuesday last week. Justice Brian Cottle said on Monday “it was brought to my attention that the audio of the proceeding of my court room was not only recorded without my permission but broadcast live on radio”.Justice Cottle on Tuesday January 10th, 2012 delivered the verdict on behalf of Justice Gertel Thom and the audio recording of the verdict as it was delivered was aired on a local radio station on Wednesday 11th January, 2012 during a talk show program.Justice Cottle explained that while he appreciates the important role which the media plays in an effective and proper democracy, the Court is always been willing to facilitate journalists with accurate reporting. He also alluded to the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court’s website on which all judgments are listed and available to the public.Journalist Matthias “matt” Peltier Jnr speaking to reporters outside the Court on Monday“While I encourage accurate reporting, I do have a problem with persons recording me without my permission. I do hope that all those media practitioners who have done so in the past would be warned and that the harmonious relationship between the Court and the media can continue.” Meantime, President of the Media Workers Association and host of the “Matt In The Morning” radio talk show who was summoned on Friday last week to attend the Court’s sitting this morning, told reporters outside the Court that the judge merely reprimanded journalists.“I came to Court this morning, the judge never called my name he was just actually reprimanding journalists here, he was advising them not to record and obey the rules of the Court and he was hoping that those of us present would pass on the message to other journalists outside to obey the rules of the Court. I had no reporters in Court, Q95 was not in Court, I was live on the radio and that broadcast came the next day. I re-broadcasted the actual judgment Matt in the Morning last Wednesday without finding out if you will, whether the judge gave permission.”Peltier said although he should have questioned his source before airing the recording he did not break the rules of the Court.Attorney at Law David Bruney and Matt Peltier on their way to Court on Monday morning.“In retrospect you can say that if I had asked, because usually the judge gives or does not give permission. What I did not do is to ask the source from whence it came whether the judge gave permission. On hindsight you can say “well I should have asked” but I did not break the rules of the Court in the sense where I did not misrepresent what the judge said, it was a complete verbatim recording of what transpired in Court.”Mr. Peltier says while he will never reveal who his source is and would not have done so if the judge had asked, “we as journalists, as professionals should respect the rules of the Court and let’s just ensure that whoever recorded that broadcast learnt a lesson”.Mr. Peltier also noted that the verdict was of public interest and highlighted that there were people celebrating outside the Court before the judge concluded the verdict so persons were using their mobile phones while in Court which is against the Court’s rule. Dominica Vibes News Sharing is caring!