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Munroe: Smith should be compensated for arrest

Guardian Staff Reporter

Published: Jul 15, 2017

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Attorney Wayne Munroe, QC, said yesterday that the government should compensate former Bahamas Agricultural and Industrial Corporation (BAIC) Chairman Dion Smith and the eight BAIC employees after it was revealed that no evidence of wrongdoing was found in the theft probe at BAIC.

Police had said they were investigating a report of theft of electronic items on the night of the May 10 general election.

Smith was arrested, held overnight and released the next day.

Eight BAIC employees were also questioned and released.

Munroe represented Smith and those eight employees.

“The government should stop doing foolishness,” Munroe charged yesterday, in an interview with The Nassau Guardian.

“An apology doesn’t help, does it?

“They should give him some money and not just him, the other eight people who they embarrassed.

“You would be surprised how much of an apology giving somebody some money is.

“...We said it was a witch hunt then. We say it was a witch hunt now.

“There is a price for itself and the price isn’t an apology.”

Assistant Commissioner of Police Paul Rolle said on Thursday that “The stuff removed was apparently his (Smith’s). Persons thought different. We found out it is not so; so in relation to this there was no evidence of any wrongdoing.”

Shortly after the arrest, Munroe said that on the afternoon of the general election, Smith took a speaker and personal television to BAIC to watch the election results.

Munroe said when it became clear to Smith that he had lost the Nassau Village seat around 8 p.m., he left the corporation.

He said Smith left his belongings at the building and later asked several employees to remove them from the building.

Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) Interim Leader Philip Brave Davis compared the Royal Bahamas Police Force’s handling of the matter and arrests to the secret state police of Nazi Germany.

Munroe insisted yesterday, “They were ascended upon with an assault riffle, the employees of BAIC, one of the most amazing things I’ve seen.

“Then they were held overnight for what amounts to an allegation of a commercial crime which again is a very unusual thing to see.

“They were kept away from their family and friends.

“They were paraded all over social media; what causes people to think that, that should cost a whole lot of money.

“If you have to pay a whole lot of money for doing it you are unlikely to do it again.”

Munroe could not say at the time whether his clients had intentions of seeking legal action

Last week, police revealed the matter was turned over to the new Anti-Corruption Unit of the Royal Bahamas Police Force for a wider investigation.


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