The ALP sticks by MP accused of passport fraud

Attorney General Steadroy "Cutie" Benjamin

Attorney General Steadroy "Cutie" Benjamin

The opposition Antigua Labour Party (ALP) is claiming that the ruling United Progressive Party (UPP) has misrepresented a recent Privy Council ruling involving one of its representatives.

The London-based court ruled Wednesday that Antigua Labour Party MP Steadroy “Cutie” Benjamin was wrong to believe the DPP had the authority to instruct the police to drop charges against him. The court also ruled that the fraud charges brought against him should stand.

Following the ruling, the UPP held a press conference, hosted by Chairman Leon Chaku Symister and political hopeful Senator Joanne Massiah, calling for Benjamin to step down as an election candidate.

Benjamin is the sitting MP for St John’s City South and a candidate for the 2014 general elections.

Antigua Labour Party Chairman Paul “Chet” Greene charged members of the UPP with playing politics and giving the impression that Benjamin was found guilty of some offense.ALP Chairman Paul “Chet” Greene

ALP Chairman Paul “Chet” Greene

“What was tried at the Privy Council was a constitutional motion to see whether the DPP has the authority to direct or instruct the police. The Privy Council ruled that the DPP cannot direct, but he can certainly request,” Greene said.

“What this does is set the stage for a case to now go before the court. One gets the impression from listening to Chaku and Joanne that Cutie Benjamin was found guilty by the Privy Council. No such thing happened.”

UPP Chairman Symister yesterday said that, while Benjamin is innocent until proven guilty, no one seeking public office should have the cloud of prosecution hanging over him.

But Greene says no one should be fired just on the appearance of wrongdoing.

“That standard should not apply in any case. Persons must be given a fair crack of the whip where justice is concerned,” Greene said.

In a matter dating back some seven years, Benjamin is alleged to have, on two separate occasions, signed passport applications for individuals purporting to be someone else.

Two persons have served jailed time in connection with the case.

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18 thoughts on “The ALP sticks by MP accused of passport fraud

  1. a good name is rather to be chosen than great riches why gain the world and lost your soul some people in antigua will do anything and say anything for politics.

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  2. Someone help me understand. Cutie used the law to delay a case in where he clearly messed up by issuing a passport in the name of a dead man he claimed he knew very well. Now he’s running for office? People still want to vote for him?
    The other people involved have already done their time and been released, which means they were guilty.
    There must be something in the water.

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  3. Remember people if you spit in the sky some will fall back in your face. And Kama is real, so he careful how quick you are to judge people because of politics. Just saying.

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  4. It is very strange we all want to come down hard on Cuite, what about pastors, doctors, and other lawyers who have sign pictures for peoplewhom they do not know and they sign it because they are good friends. If we dto a good check some of the pictures that are sign of the children will tell you that they not know the person who certify the pictures for passport most of time. When it comes to that, it will be plenty fraud charges against a lot of person for certifying pictures for passport. The police will have it hands full.

    Just playing politics,

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    -7Controversial!

  5. I am going to make a criminal report against Upp and the leader Baldwin, and then file criminal charges, against baldwin, will he not be running in the election scheduled next month? he can’t because criminal charges were laid, even thou he was not found guilty.

    I am using UPP logic here and it is not far fetch to file criminal charges against balwin spencer

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    -13Controversial!

  6. this is the worst lawyer that i have met in antigua,it heart breaking for the nation of antigua down right shame

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  7. We nah kay.
    We staying with Cutie.

    We want change!

    We want Asot, Cutie. We nah kay if dey corrupt.
    We nah kay. We want change.

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    -31Controversial!

  8. Chet Green did not listen or read what Chaku and Joanne said correctly. They never said Cutie was guilty, they said he now has a criminal case to answer and as such should not be allowed to run in the elections. The said way the late George Walter was prevented from running in All Saints when there was a criminal case against him for the importation of a steel frame. His wife ran in his place and lost. ALP do you remember? If the Police drop these charges, then they cannot charge anybody again for any other crime.

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  9. Antigua for life April 17, 2014 at 17:01 - Reply

    CALL THE ELECTION. What is the hold up all kind of excuse. Bring it on vote vote vote let go

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    -17Hot Debate!

    • Why bother doesn’t matter who win or lose, the country is still going to be more corrupt than ever, you Antiguans keep playing ‘Arwe nice’ card. They all want people to think they are nice so anybody can come and do as they please.

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