Director of Public Prosecutions

The Director of Public Prosecutions, a position created by the Constitution of Trinidad and Tobago, is the head of the Criminal Law Department. The establishment of this position stemmed from the need for a constitutional post that would always be independent of political and stakeholder involvement in the prosecution of criminal matters. In this circumstance, the independence of this post is constitutionally guaranteed.

To be the most effective, efficient, competent and technologically advanced provider of prosecution services in the Caribbean Region.

To represent the State in matters before the Courts of Trinidad and Tobago and where necessary, abroad and in so doing, always ensuring that in the discharge of its functions it is fair, independent and objective.

Legal Mandates
The main roles and functions of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) are set out in Section 90, Chapter 6, Part 1 of the Constitution of Trinidad and Tobago.

Section 90 (3) vests certain constitutional powers upon the DPP and is stated as follows:

“The DPP shall have power in any case in which he considers it proper to do so:

To institute and undertake criminal proceedings against any person before any Court in respect of any offence against the law of Trinidad and Tobago;

To take over and continue any such criminal proceedings that may have been instituted by any other person or authority;

To discontinue at any stage before judgment is delivered any such criminal proceedings instituted or undertaken by himself or any other person or authority.”

Section 90 (5) also vests upon the DPP powers in terms of Appeal matters, and states:

"For the purposes of this section reference to criminal proceedings includes an appeal from the determination of any Court in Criminal proceedings or a case stated or a question of law reserved in respect of those proceedings.”

Section 90 (6) enables the DPP to carry out his / her constitutional functions through persons to whom he / she give instructions:

"The functions of the DPP under subsection (3) may be exercised by him in person or through other persons acting under and in accordance with his general or specific instructions”

Roles and Functions
The functions of the Criminal Law Department also include the following:

  Undertaking Criminal Prosecution in all High Courts (Assizes and Appeal);
  Briefing Counsel in the United Kingdom on the conduct of Appeals before the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council;
  Undertaking prosecutions in complex matters and matters of public interest in the forty (40) Magistrates' Courts throughout the country;
  Formulating prosecution policy;
  Interfacing on a regular basis with Governmental, Non-Governmental and international agencies such as the Police, the Defence Force, Customs and Excise, the Board of Inland Revenue and Town and Country Planning Division. In addition, there is a great deal of interaction with the Public, the United, States Department of Justice, the Crown Prosecutors Service and other prosecuting agencies within the Caribbean Territories;
  Assisting with Extradition requests;
  Proffering indictments before the High Court and preparing and filing other legal documents

Roger Gaspard

Deputy DPP

Contact Information.

  • Phone (North):   625-9748
  • Fax (North):       625-6341
  • Phone (South):   652-2139/2225
  • Fax (South):       652-3009