Robinson v The Queen: PC 1985

Where a defendant found himself unrepresented on the day of trial, an adjournment should be granted. The constitutional right to representation was not a guarantee of representation but a right for the defendant to arrange representation at his own or public expense. The trial had proceeded when the defendant, having failed to put his counsel in funds, appeared unrepresented: ‘… the important word used in section 20(6)(c) is ‘permitted’. He must not be prevented by the State in any of its manifestations, whether judicial or executive, from exercising the right accorded by the subsection. He must be permitted to exercise those rights.’


[1985] AC 956, [1985] 2 All ER 594


Jamaica (Constitution) Order in Council 1962 SCh 2 s20(6)(c)

Cited by:

CitedGianchand Jahree v The State PC 28-Feb-2005
(Mauritius) The defendant appealed his conviction for possession of counterfeit bank notes, saying he had been unrepresented throughout, and that the magistrate had intervened in the character of a prosecutor.
Held: The right to representation . .
AppliedDunkley and Robinson v The Queen PC 1-Nov-1994
(Jamaica) The appellant’s counsel had walked out of a murder trial after a dispute with the judge, leaving the appellant unrepresented for the remainder of the proceedings.
Held: A defendant in a capital murder case is to be allowed to find . .
CitedGrant v The Queen PC 16-Jan-2006
(Jamaica) The defendant appealed his conviction for murder saying that the admission of an unsworn statement by one witness and the non-admission of another similar statement who did not either attend court was unconstitutional. He shot the victim . .
CitedDelroy Ricketts v The Queen PC 15-Dec-1997
(Jamaica) Special leave was granted to the defendant to appeal his conviction for murder. Counsel had been late for his trial, and the jury empanelled. When counsel arrived he said the defendant had not understood the judge. A trial took place as to . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Commonwealth, Criminal Practice, Constitutional

Updated: 13 May 2022; Ref: scu.223459