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Questions Arise Around Trinidad And Tobago Judge's Connection To A Gay Man Who Was Shot

A Tinidad Judge is being questioned about his connection to a gay man who was shot outside his home.

36-year-old Dillian Johnson was shot on his hand outside his home in Trinidad and Tobago on December 3. Afterwards, he left for the UK and says he’s afraid he’ll be killed if he returns to his home country.

“I fear being murdered for my sexuality if I go back,” Johnson said. “My relationship with [the chief justice] has been highly publicized.”

Now, the Law Association of Trinidad and Tobago is investigating allegations focusing on chief justice Ivor Archie.

Lawyers aren’t wondering if Archie was involved with the shooting (though some media sources are accusing him of that). They’re wondering if Archie has been personally advocating for Johnson and are focused on the implications of why.

Rumor is that Archie brought Johnson with him to a four-day Commonwealth law conference in Guyana in 2016 in order to lobby for the state housing of Johnson and others.

On top of these accusations, there’s also the second layer of accusations towards Archie’s relationship with Johnson. Some are hinting that he has an “intimate” relationship with Johnson.

What started these second accusations were leaked photographs that dropped this past January. The photos depicted the two men on a hotel bed together at the Guyanan conference.  

That said, the photographs were confirmed to be photoshopped. And, of course, Archie has denied the claims brought against him by the law association.

Though despite being married, Archie and his defense team have avoided labeling him as straight, gay, or bisexual. They say this is because his sexual orientation did “not affect the chief justice’s professional conduct and concern[s] his private life.”

Trinidad and Tobago is still a greatly homophobic country. “Buggery” is punishable by up to 25 years in prison and six gay men were murdered in the first half of 2017.

As such, the Law Association of Trinidad is trying its hardest to confirm their suspicions of Archie and Johnson having a romantic relationship. Meanwhile, Archie, who is an open advocate for LGBTQ rights, says the law association is biased towards him and out to use any means necessary to bring him down.

h/t: The Guardian