Attorneys representing businessman Clifton Bacchus are refuting the claims in the Guyana Chronicle that the Sleepin Hotel operations and the Carnival Casino are funded and financed from criminal proceeds such as drug trafficking, money laundering, and forgery.
The articles were published on August 17 under the headlines “THE DUTCH CONNECTION…Sleepin Casino Surinamese partner was jailed for money laundering…Bacchus quizzed about permission to import slot machines”.
In a statement, Attorney Anil Nandlall said his client and his company are not funded by Bhagwandath ‘Bidjay’ Parmasar as was stated in the article and lamented that the businessman is losing millions as a result of the erroneous claims.
Nandlall said the Sleepin Hotel Chain has received not a single cent of funding from any “Bhagwandath ‘Bidjay’ Parmasar” or any “Yokohama Trading Company” as is alleged in the said article.
“Our client’s financing is from Trust Company (Guyana Limited) and Scotia Bank (Guyana), Wide Grace Limited and Global Trading Company Limited,” Nandlall said.
The article recites certain criminal legal proceedings which were instituted against Parmasar, detailing matters in relation to his trial, the investigation launched against him and elements of the evidence adduced against him.
“The article then, maliciously and libelously refers to an alleged SOCU probe involving our client, clearly trying to create a nexus between our client and Mr. Parmasar’s legal wrangle. As you are aware, our client has already issued a public statement disclaiming any knowledge of this alleged investigations by SOCU,” the statement outlined.
Nandlall views the intent of the article as to convey the impression that his client and his company are connected to, engaged in, associated with and funded by, illegal monies and proceeds of international crimes.
Nandlall also stated that Bhagwandath ‘Bidjay’ Parmasar and Yokohama Trading Company are not directors or shareholders of any of the aforementioned companies.
Additionally, Nandlall said his client has a rental arrangement with Pasha Global Inc., a Guyanese company which is neither owned by nor connected to Bhagwandath ‘Bidjay’ Parmasar.
“We are to further inform you, that the aforementioned damning and defamatory publications have damaged our client’s character and reputation. They have also caused him and his family immeasurable pain, suffering, trauma, and public humiliation,” he stated.
Nandlall noted too that more significantly, the offensive publications have significantly tarnished and irretrievably stained his client’s business, as an international hotel.
“The resultant loss and financial damage are and will continue to be irreparable. Indeed, cancellations of reservations have already begun and are expected to continue, unabated,” he explained.
Nandlall also noted that the publications may have also damaged the businessman’s prospects of being granted a Casino License for which an application has been made and is pending before the relevant Authority.
“In short, the publication has and is likely to cost my client hundreds of millions of dollars in damages and possibly, financial ruination,” he stated.
In the circumstances, Nandlall is demanding that the Guyana Chronicle publish as soon as possible, a public apology to our client, giving same equal prominence which the offensive article enjoyed, along with a retraction of the said article.
“The same will certainly be of some mitigating effect in legal proceedings which shall ensue,” he cautioned.