TRYING TO GET RID OF THE JUDGE IN THE GIBSON CASE

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There is an expression in law called “ judge shopping “ or “ forum shopping”.  This describes trying to find a judge or a court that will be more favourable to you when you appear at trial.  That is what the press has accused Adrian Gibson of doing: the FNM MP who is facing trial before Cheryl Bethel, Justice of the Supreme Court in his bribery and corruption trial.  He got rid of Ellsworth Johnson, the former Immigration Minister, as his lawyer when he was served with the voluntary bill of indictment.  In front of Justice  Bernard Turner, he asked that Cheryl Bethel be replaced as the judge before whom he would have to plead..  He made a fuss about sitting in the prisoner’s dock when he appeared in court.  Then his lawyer objected to Mrs. Bethel on the grounds that she was married to the late Peter Bethel, former PLP Minister, and therefore was politically biased against him.  Not surprisingly the judge refused.  You will remember that when Shane Gibson had the same objection because the judge in his cases was married to the FNM ideologue Ferron Bethel.  She refused to step down.  Then these memes started appearing on Facebook. One of them said that a PLP Judge could not give Mr. Gibson a fair trial.  Problem is there is no PLP judge.  There is only a judge. Mrs. Grant Bethel turned down the application by his attorneys and Mr. Gibson has to face her in court in May of next year.