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» GUEST RUNDOWNS » JAMAICAN POLITICIANS RECEIVED DONATIONS FROM CONVICTED PONZI SCHEMER!

JAMAICAN POLITICIANS RECEIVED DONATIONS FROM CONVICTED PONZI SCHEMER!

David Smith
David Smith—

 

Two prominent local figures last night moved swiftly to either clarify or distance themselves from fresh claims outlined in a court document that they received millions of dollars in donations from convicted Olint boss David Smith.

Former Information Minister Daryl Vaz, who is listed as getting US$50,000, said the revelation was nothing new as he had already admitted receiving what he described as political contributions from Smith.

“It was not a personal contribution, but a political contribution to the constituency,” explained Vaz, who is the member of parliament for Western Portland.

He said his name was listed separate from his Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) in order to make the distinction between his roles then as deputy treasurer and parliamentary candidate.

Vaz also defended the decision to accept the donations, pointing out that at the time they were made, Olint was a legal entity in both Jamaica and the Turks and Caicos Islands (TCI).

Despite this, the former minister said his next move would be guided by his attorneys and the law.

PJ PATTERSONDaryl Vaz

Former Prime Minister P.J. Patterson, who is reported to have received US$1 million, issued a statement denying the claim made in a confiscation order issued by the Supreme Court of the TCI.

“I deny categorically ever soliciting or receiving any such gift,” Patterson said in a statement released last night.

The JLP, in a two-sentence statement, acknowledged that Olint/Smith were among many contributors to its campaign leading up to the general elections in 2007.

However, the party said it was “examining the claim that US$5 million was donated to the party”.

Up to last night, there was no response from the People’s National Party which, according to the documents, received a gift of US$2 million from Olint.

According to the document, Smith has been ordered to pay US$21 million, or the value of his realisable property, and the total of the values of his tainted gifts, by October 24.

 

 

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