High Court Justice Davindra Rampersad ruled today that sexual activity between two consenting male adults is not illegal.
This decision now enhances the judge’s ruling in April this year, that homosexuality in Trinidad and Tobago is not a crime, and its prohibition is an infringement on the rights of such persons.
President of the Coalition Advocating for Sexual Inclusion and Orientation, Colin Robinson, describes the ruling by Justice Rampersad as not new law but simply to settle what the letter of the law should be, to correspond to the ruling that he made earlier this year.
Justice Rampersad ruled then, that Sections 13 and 16 of the Sexual Offences Act are “unconstitutional, illegal, null, void, invalid and are of no effect to the extent that these laws criminalise any acts constituting consensual sexual conduct between adults”.
The ruling led to jubilation among some activists, causing clashes between them and opponents who had gathered outside the Hall of Justice in Port of Spain.
Under Section 13 of the Sexual Offences Act, a person who commits the offence of buggery is liable on conviction to imprisonment for twenty-five years.
The measure applies to intercourse between a consenting male and female or between two consenting males.
Mr Robinson gave further details on the development during an interview on the State of the Nation Programme on Power 102.1fm this afternoon. We reached him in Washington DC.
He also commented positively on the state‘s decision to appeal the matter.