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Jun 1, 2017

Who Will Replace Denys in Fight Over B.T.L. Settlement?

Michael Ashcroft

Judge Barrow’s departure to the seat of the CCJ leaves behind a vacuum, as not only was the venerable attorney government’s chief legal counsel; he is also recognized as its best.  But there are pending government cases, including legal matters involving the Ashcroft Group which has given notice that it will be presenting a bill to government for the settlement agreement in respect of the B.T.L. nationalization.  That figure, it is anticipated, will ring in at as much as five hundred and fifty million dollars, of which one hundred and thirty five million has already been paid.  So, with Brother Denys off to dispense justice at the highest court in the region, who will take his place as government’s lead attorney?  It’s a question that, according to PM Barrow, has no direct answer at the moment.  In fact, his replacement will be a combination of local and regional talent; a mixture that he says will be prepared to take on the Ashcroft Group.

 

Dean Barrow

Prime Minister Dean Barrow

“It is a huge void to fill but naturally we’ll manage.  There is going to be a combination, I think, of local representation, together with one or two lawyers drawn from the wider Caribbean.”

 

Reporter

“So you’ll have to import.”

 

Prime Minister Dean Barrow

“Indeed.  In a number of cases, absolutely, yes.”

 

Reporter

“One of those cases, it segues naturally, we are told that Mr. Ashcroft or the Ashcroft alliance will be arriving with the bill for their legal costs which the government agreed to in its settlement which you signed in Miami.  What is the quantum of that?  We are told it’s in the many scores of millions of dollars.”

 

Prime Minister Dean Barrow

“Well so I’ve heard.  No question at all but that we will challenge the quantum.  You’re right, the settlement agreement does provide for the Ashcroft alliance to recoup its expenses.  I don’t see that that’s a blank cheque and I have no doubt, given what’s been said by the alliance that the claim with which we will be confronted is going to be horribly inflated.  I think that it will constitute an attempt to recoup what the alliance has not been able to procure by way of the arbitration awards judgment in the United States.  So there is no doubt at all but that this matter will go back before the CCJ.”

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