Bermuda police are looking into whether any criminal offences were committed in the handling of the Lahey lawsuit, in the wake of allegations against former Attorney General Trevor Moniz.
Premier David Burt reported concerns over the handling of the Lahey lawsuit to Governor John Rankin last week, and the Bermuda Police subsequently started inquiries.
Following parliamentary debates and a call by the governing party for an investigation, Premier Burt met with the Governor to relay the concerns, he told us on Sunday.
Police subsequently contacted him for further information but Mr Burt could not say whether the BPS had started a formal investigation.
We contacted the BPS for comment and received this statement from Assistant Commissioner Antoine Daniels this morning.
The BPS is aware of the statements that have been made about this case. We are in the process of recording the full facts and consulting with the Director of Public Prosecutions to determine whether the circumstances may amount to any specific criminal offences.
While the police have shied away from describing their inquiries as a formal criminal investigation, the DPP who decides whether to prosecute, is typically the last stop after a criminal investigation has concluded.
Governor John Rankin declined to comment.
I have consulted the Governor and we have no statement to make at this point in time, said Deputy Governor Ginny Ferson
The concerns center around allegations that information gathered during a criminal investigation was improperly and unlawfully used to support the civil case.
Former Attorney General Trevor Moniz has defended his handling of the Lahey lawsuit, but the governing party insists that he abused his office and should be investigated.
Moniz faced claims of shredding documents related to the case, failing to fully inform cabinet of his actions and violating the Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty with the US which prohibits using shared information from criminal investigations in civil trials.
On March 16, he denied the allegations with a ‘personal explanation’ meant to end the controversy. Moniz told his parliamentary colleagues that the Progressive Labour Party’s allegations that he had put the MLAT treaty at risk was untrue as he had responded adequately to concerns expressed by the US Department of Justice. And stated categorically that he had not shredded any documents or used evidence from a criminal investigation to support the Lahey suit.
No documents of any value were shredded during my time as Attorney General, by me or at my direction. I have no idea why anyone would allege that I was shredding documents in a case which I was supporting.
But the PLP came forward with further allegations of wrongdoing and unlawful conduct to which Mr Moniz has offered no defence.
Mr Moniz and the One Bermuda Alliance did not respond to specific questions put to them for this story.
In parliamentary debate following the personal explanation Mr Burt produced an email from Mr Moniz to the Government’s ITO department forwarding a request that evidence on its servers be sent to the Boston law firm Cooley.
Mr Moniz told the department that he was acting pursuant to the Proceeds of Crime Act. But the Premier argued that he had improperly used the provisions of the law.
Story to be updated
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