A woman, who reportedly owes a man US$4,300 after he gave her a US$73,000 downpayment on three cars, on Monday forked out US$3,312 after she was told she would have to spend the holidays behind bars.
The accused, Latoya Kelly, who first appeared in court in September but has been sidestepping her obligation to repay the funds, was first remanded last Friday on a charge of failing to deliver in a reasonable time by Acting Chief Parish Judge Chester Crooks when she came to the Kingston and St Andrew Parish Court empty-handed after promising, on several occasions, to bring at least US$1,000.
She was remanded to return to court on Monday with the full amount, but only came with US$900. As a result, Parish Judge Sanchia Burrell, who was standing in for Judge Crooks, remanded her despite pleas from her lawyer Charles Williams.
The attorney insisted that Judge Crooks had indicated that his client’s bail was to be reinstated if she paid a substantial amount of the US$1,000.
However, Judge Burrell, in response, told him that she was not bound by the instructions of another judge. Furthermore, she said based on what was written in court documents, Wallace should’ve come prepared to pay the full amount.
The judge also told Williams that the court was not bargaining with his client, because she had several months to repay the complainant but chose not to.
“Your client has communicated clearly with the court. She was on bail between September and December and the complainant did not get a dime, and she was remanded on Friday and US$900 came,” Burrell said while noting that Kelly would remain in custody.
Williams then asked the judge if he could return today with part of the money and have her bail reinstated, but Judge Burrell ordered that Kelly be remanded until January 28 when her boyfriend would have gathered the remaining portion of the funds to hand over to the court.
However, shortly after Judge Burrell handed over the court to Judge Crooks, Williams asked for the matter to be revisited, noting that his client was remanded after she brought US$900. Judge Crooks told the attorney that he had interpreted his instructions wrongly and that his client should have brought all of the money.
The judge further told Williams that he would revisit the matter today if his client brought the money.
But Williams asked the judge to stand down his matter until the end of the court list for his client to have her friend bring a substantial portion of the funds to pay over to the court.
Kelly’s friend then came with the cash in Jamaican dollars and was told to return with funds in US dollars. The friend subsequently returned with US$2,412.
Kelly’s bail was reinstated for her to return to court on January 28, 2019 with the balance.
According to allegations, in September 2017, the complainant gave Kelly a total of US$73,000 in four separate transactions as a downpayment on three motor cars. However, Kelly failed to secure the cars and, on several occasions, failed to return the money to the complainant. The matter was reported to the police and she was arrested.