Activist Kenson King has been slapped with three charges alleging that he uttered seditious words in St. Vincent and the Grenadines.
King, 33, of Park Hill, was arrested on Friday morning and the charges against him were laid later that day.
His lawyer, Kay Bacchus-Baptiste, told iWitness News, on Saturday, that her client remained in custody and police have said that he would not be granted bail ahead of his court appearance on Monday.
The lawyer said that her client had been charged that on Dec. 19, 2021, in SVG, he did utter seditious words, to wit:
— “Yo see you Mrs. Medford, you should be afraid to come out of your house right now, they playing with alyo Vincentian, they are playing with alyo, me alone can’t do it. Me alone ain’t do it because if it left to me alone and I could get what is needed. I know by today they could have been looking to pull back them stuff dey. All like Sister Medford ah them need to just disappear”.
— “Alyo should have the foundation ah St. Vincent shaking right now and ah them wondering what’s next. Some serious anarchy should be happening in St. Vincent until we have proper decent people running SVG in the form of Dr. Friday and his team”.
—”There is no longer any peace in St. Vincent. This is war eh. This right now is war. We are in a war and in a war, there are casualties. We need to make some casualties, one way or the other because there are already casualties on our side. There are already casualties on our side, moles? Stamp out the moles ah them too”.
Police are alleging that King made the statements, contrary to Section 53(1)(b) of the Criminal Code, Chapter 171 of the Revised Edition of the Laws of SVG, 2009.
Bacchus-Batiste told iWitness News around 7:50 a.m. on Saturday that her client had not been granted station bail.
“My call to Colin was met by the words ‘Don’t call my phone girl’ and he hung up on me,” Bacchus-Baptiste said, referring to Commissioner of Police Colin John, a lawyer and former assistant director of public prosecutions.
She said that she had Ronnia Durham, her junior on case, call the police chief.
“And he told her, ‘Kenson King will remain in custody until Monday’,” Bacchus-Baptiste told iWitness News.
“This is clearly vindictive and [an] abuse of Kenson’s right to bail after being charged. For this offence Colin must grant bail and can’t keep him for over 48 hours. To keep him until Monday is illegal. This abuse must stop,” the lawyer said.
King was among eight activists charged last August with illegally organising and taking part in protests in Kingstown earlier this year.
However, in December, Director of Public Prosecution Sejilla Mc Dowall entered nolle prosequi in the charges against each of the eight.
King, a prison officer, is being tried on a charge that on June 27, 2020 at Her Majesty’s Prisons in Kingstown, he unlawfully and maliciously wounded prisoner Dorian Mapp, 23, of Victoria Village.
In May 2020, King was detained for more than 30 hours then released without charge after he said on Facebook that a politician had allegedly ordered the return of a licensed firearms to a man who had threatened to kill his relatives.