First Look

Automatic expungement available for certain ganja offences

Ministry of Justice | 2015-07-15 00:00:00

Minister of Justice, Senator the Honourable Mark Golding, has signed the Criminal Records (Rehabilitation of Offenders) (Automatic Expungement of Convictions) Order, 2015 to enshrine in law the administrative procedure which has been established for the expungement of past convictions for smoking ganja, possession of ganja where the sentence imposed was a fine not exceeding one thousand dollars ($1,000), and possession of pipes or other utensils used in connection with smoking of ganja. These arrangements are authorized by the automatic expungement provisions introduced by the Criminal Records (Rehabilitation of Offenders) (Amendment) Act, 2014.  The Order became effective on July 9, 2015. 

Under the Order, a person’s criminal record of any such conviction will be expunged once the person applies for a police certificate (i.e. a certificate of their police record). The application can be made at any of the following:

• The Criminal Records Office, 34 Duke Street, Kingston
• The Summit Police Station (St. James)
• May Pen Police Station (Clarendon)
• Area 2 Police Headquarters
• Pompano Bay Police Station (St. Mary)

The conviction having been so expunged, the police certificate will be issued without the conviction appearing on it.

By way of a separate arrangement, a person’s criminal record of any such conviction will be expunged once the person’s finger prints are taken at any parish Divisional Headquarters of the Jamaica Constabulary Force. Where a conviction has been expunged via this arrangement as a result of the person’s finger prints being taken, the Order requires the Criminal Records Office to inform the Ministry of Justice of the particulars relating to the person. This is to enable the Ministry of Justice to notify the person that the conviction has been expunged from their Criminal Record.

These special expungement arrangements will enable persons with these ganja offences on their record to rid themselves of that blight, thereby assisting them to seek employment and travel opportunities which were previously unattainable due to their criminal record. 

Posted By :Justice Education Unit

Company Name : Ministry of Justice

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Company Address : NCB Towers, South 2 Oxford Road, Kingston 5

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