Jowelle de Souza - Legal Biography

Legal Biography

Police arrested De Souza and charged her with assault in March 1997 after she pushed a photographer. She said the photographer knew all about her past and was taking pictures of her without permission. De Souza said that after officer George took her to the police station, he and other male officers taunted her for hours about her sexuality. The men insisted on searching her, even though her identification and appearance indicated she was a woman. They eventually relented but insisted on having a female officer strip-search De Souza. "There was no legal right to search," she said. "I pushed (the photographer). I didn't assault him with a deadly weapon."

De Souza sought good legal counsel, and was able to hire one of Trinidad's most prominent lawyers, the attorney general's wife, Lynette Maharaj. De Souza won the case and gave her awarded money to charity.

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