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Minister Richardson calls for meeting with Justice Committee of Parliament

​On Tuesday May 19, 2020 Minister of Justice Anna E. Richardson was scheduled to have a closed
door meeting with the Justice Committee of Parliament, to discuss the pending approval of the
draft Penal Procedure Code. However, due to the requested urgent meeting of Parliament
concerning government’s deadline to respond to the conditions posed by the Kingdom
government as it relates to St. Maarten receiving financial assistance to cover the cost of the St.
Maarten Stimulus and Relief Plan (SSRP), the scheduled meeting has been postponed until
Friday, May 22, 2020.

Considering that to date, little headway has been made by various Ministers of Justice and
various Parliaments in moving the handling of the Penal Procedure Code forward considerably,
Minister Richardson has opted for a different approach by requesting the scheduled meeting of
Tuesday May 19, 2020 to be held behind closed door. Prior to Tuesday’s meeting being
requested, the Minister and her legal team reviewed the proposed amendments made by
Members of Parliament and considered the proposed amendment achievable. Minister
Richardson is of the opinion that further discussions in a closed setting will allow for a more open
exchange of views and will lead to all parties reaching consensus. After which the discussions
will then be brought to a public meeting for decision-making and will see the majority of
Parliament vote to pass the law.

“The deliberations on this draft Penal Procedure have been ongoing for some time now. It is
lamentable that to date, the public discussions that were held did not produce satisfactory
results. What we have seen is St. Maarten been given a public statement. Thankfully, despite
being in the same space as it relates to the draft Penal Procedure Code, the FATF matrix was
completed and sent on to the CFATF Secretariat in the Trinidad and Tobago on April 30, 2020 to
further confirm the passing and enactment of the Civil Code and the Penal Code in 2019,” said
Minister Richardson.

St. Maarten having submitted the matrix puts the country on a positive rhythm with the FATF
regulations and brings it closer to move out of the third round and into the fourth round. Minister
Richardson looks forward to attending the CFATF Plenary session in November 2020, gaining a
positive review for St. Maarten and thereby applying to move to the fourth round in May, 2021
and having the public statement lifted for the country.