Superior Court of the Virgin Islands
Rules Governing the
Superior Court of the Virgin Islands

Rule 128. Motions

(a) All pre-trial motions shall be made prior to the motion deadline established by the court, unless otherwise extended by the court for good cause shown. The court shall rule on all motions prior to judgment.

(b) No criminal case filed in the court, including traffic citations, shall be dismissed upon motion by any party except upon a determination by the Court that the dismissal is in good faith, in the public interest, and in the interest of justice.

(c) Nothing in this rule shall be construed to limit the right of a prosecutor to "nolle pros" a criminal matter prior to the filing of a criminal complaint or information.--Amended Oct. 14, 1994, eff. Nov. 16, 1994; July 15, 1997.

Case Notes


Territorial Court Rule 128(b) was an impermissible substantive rule of law and was therefore void for violation of separation of powers since, by commanding and empowering court to determine whether dismissals of prosecutions would be in the public interest and interest of justice, Rule 128(b) licensed substitution of Territorial Court's judgment for that of prosecutor. In re Richards, 42 V.I. 469, 213 F.3d 773 (3d Cir. 2000).

Amendment to Territorial Court rule was an attempt by judicial branch to create and define duties, obligations, and rights of executive branch to prosecute crime; it was thus a substantive, not procedural, rule and was therefore ultra vires and void, and it was further invalid as violating constitutional doctrine of separation of powers. In re Richards, D.C.V.I. 1999, 40 V.I. 161, 52 F. Supp. 2d 522.

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