Sex Offender May Be Transferred To UK Facility

August 13, 2018

Convicted child sex offender Merrick Seaman might be transferred to a specialized facility in the United Kingdom, however the decision must await a UK Court ruling.

A Government spokesperson noted that the “man remains detained, under special powers of the Mental Health Act, to provide for the specialized monitoring that is required.”

“An intention to transfer a convicted sexual offender to the UK must await a UK Court ruling,” National Security Minister Wayne Caines said.

“Section C, the Remand Section of the Co-Educational Facility, has been designated a Hospital for the purposes of detaining a person suffering from mental disorder, who cannot be securely detained in a [conventional or current] hospital facility.

“The arrangements for the special confinement were jointly agreed to by the Bermuda Hospitals Board and the Department of Corrections until the individual can be relocated overseas to a more suitable facility for treatment.”

The Minister’s comments follow after a court ruling on Merrick Seaman, with the court ruling he “shall remain in hospital detention in Bermuda for the interim period leading up to his conveyance to St Andrew’s Health Care.”

The ruling said, “The Respondent was convicted by jury in the Supreme Court on 17 March 2011 on four counts of sexual exploitation of a young person.

“On 30 August 2011, he was sentenced to concurrent terms of 8 years imprisonment without a provision for supervision upon his release. On 2 November 2015 the Crown successfully appealed the sentence and the Court of Appeal imposed a supervision order for a term of three years from the Respondent’s release date from prison with a specification for him to comply with the lawful requirements of a probation officer.

“While serving this sentence, the Respondent was further convicted in the Magistrates’ Court on 21 September 2016 for the offence of wounding contrary to section 306[b] of the Criminal Code. He was sentenced to 9 months’ imprisonment to be served consecutively to his 8 year terms.

“The Respondent’s earliest release date was fixed for 15 June 2018 when he was transferred from the Westgate Correctional Facility to the Co-Ed Facility.

“The application before this Court has been made by an Originating Summons seeking an order in exercise of the Court’s inherent jurisdiction to detain the Respondent under the Supervision Order in an overseas hospital for medical treatment in respect of his mental health diagnoses.”

Puisne Judge Shade Subair wrote, “I am satisfied that Mr. Seaman has been properly diagnosed with serious mental illnesses and disorders and that a hospital detention order to the St. Andrew’s Health Care in Northampton, England is necessary not only for the protection of the general public but also for the health and safety of the Respondent himself.

“In my judgment, Mr. Seaman’s s. 5 constitutional rights against arbitrary arrest or detention have not been breached. Section 5[1][g] of the Bermuda Constitution is the relevant exception to the constitutional right against arbitrary detention.

“Mr. Seaman may, therefore, be lawfully detained on the strength of the expert evidence detailing his mental health diagnoses and for the purpose of providing him with care and treatment. The wider purpose is to protect the community from the further harm which Mr. Seaman would likely cause if not further detained and treated.

“It would indeed be irresponsible for this Court to impose an artificial time limit on the period of Mr. Seaman’s hospital detainment overseas merely for the sake of defining his term of detention.

“However, this Court will review and monitor his progress by receipt of progress reports from the Applicants at 6 month intervals. A Court hearing review on Mr. Seaman’s mental health prognosis shall also be held in one year from now.

“The Respondent shall be conveyed as soon as is reasonably practicable to St. Andrew’s Health Care in Northampton, England for hospital detention and treatment of his mental illnesses as outlined herein.

“The Respondent shall remain in hospital detention in Bermuda for the interim period leading up to his conveyance to St Andrew’s Health Care.”

The full judgement follows below [PDF here]:

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