Tuesday 20 November, 2018

Ramesh slams Gov't 'attack' on John Jeremie in CLF matter

Senior Counsel Ramesh Lawrence Maharaj is rubbishing claims of a conflict of interest in former Attorney General John Jeremie's legal representation of CL Financial shareholders in the liquidation court matter.

Maharaj was responding to a newspaper report in which a government source was quoted as saying disciplinary action would be taken against Jeremie who was privy to all government information with respect to the intervention into CL Financial while acting as Attorney General from 2009-2010.

The report stated that action could be brought against Jeremie under the Legal Profession Act.

In a statement however, Maharaj took issue with this and said Jeremie is within his rights to represent the shareholders. Maharaj is a part of the legal team acting on behalf of the shareholders in the matter.

"I have carefully studied the conflict of interest principles," he said.

"These principles are abundantly clear. They suggest that Mr Jeremie has not only the right to represent his clients but his clients have the constitutional right to representation of their choice. Mr Jeremie is a critical element of the team."

Maharaj said the government has mounted "a desperate and cowardly attack" on the former AG's integrity while hiding behind the title of "an anonymous source".

He added that the legal team will not be intimidated as it moves forward in the matter.

"An analysis of the proceedings thus far reveals his (Jeremie's) importance to the team. We shall not be intimidated by yet another of what can only be described to be ham fisted efforts which were not pursed in Court to defeat the claims of our clients and we shall continue to vigorously defend the interests of our respective clients in this matter," he said.

"This is an attack on the independence and fearlessness of Attorneys-at-Law to defend their clients in the interests of justice. It is also an attack on the rule of law and the Constitution of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago."

Meanwhile, the Government is reportedly seeking to appeal the decision of High Court Justice Kevin Ramcharan to reject its application to appoint two provisional liquidators for CL Financial.