Understanding the Law
May 14, 2010
The Criminal Code

Some two weeks ago I started to look at the Criminal Code, but broke off to bring you some topics of interest. This week I continue to look at other aspects of the Code.

High Treason

Perhaps the most serious offences one can commit are those against public order. If a person kills or attempts to kill the Governor General or anyone in that post, that person would be guilty of high treason.{{more}} He or she would also be guilty of high treason if he “levies war or assists an enemy or armed forces” against Saint Vincent and the Grenadines. The punishment for high treason is death.

Treason

Next down the line is the crime of treason and a person can commit this if he uses any violence or force in an effort to overthrow the government of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines. He could also commit the crime if he or she communicates illegally to enemy combatant, military or scientific information or any sketch, plan, model article, note or document that he knows or ought to know that could be used by an enemy and could affect the safety or defence of the state. If he or she encourages a person to invade SVG or if he conspires or have the intention and makes it into an actual. The punishment for treason is life imprisonment. No bail is afforded while a person awaits trial for high treason and treason.

A person who knows that another person has committed high treason and treason has a duty to report. If he or she fails to do so he or she may be guilty of an offence and be liable to imprisonment for seven years.

Incitement to Mutiny

Section 46 of the act deals with the offence of incitement to mutiny. Mutiny is an offence committed against members of the police force, including auxiliary police and volunteer force. The person who seduces any of the above from duty or from allegiance to the Queen would be guilty of an offence and liable to imprisonment for life. It is the same punishment for anyone who incites a person to commit any act of mutiny or to participate in a mutinous assembly.

Anyone who aids and abets or is accessory to the mutiny or incites a police officer to disobedience to any lawful order given by a superior officer is guilty and liable to imprisonment for five years.

Inducing desertion

Any person who persuades or procures, aids or abets, aids in concealing a police officer who has deserted, is guilty of an offence and is liable to imprisonment for six months.

Piracy

Section 49 describes piracy as “any illegal act of violence, detention or any act of depredation committed for private ends by the crew or the passengers of a private ship or a private air craft and directed – on the high seas against another ship or in any place against any aircraft or against persons or property on board such ship or aircraft; against a ship, aircraft, persons or property in a place outside the jurisdiction of any state” I will continue on this next week.

Ada Johnson is a solicitor and barrister-at-law.
E-mail address is: [email protected]