ST. KITTS – Opposition leader says Prime Minister was given a full report on Chinese fugitive

Leader of  the main opposition St. Kitts Nevis Labour Party (SKNLP),  Dr. Denzil Douglas has disclosed that he has in his possession, irrefutable evidence that Prime Minister Timothy Harris was given a full report on a Chinese economic citizen in April of 2015, less than six weeks after taking office.

Douglas“This is a fact that Dr. Harris is trying to hide from the public of St. Kitts and Nevis with regard to this particular matter,” said Douglas, who denied that he was informed when he was Prime Minister that Interpol had issued a red alert for the Chinese fugitive in 2014. Ren Biao is wanted in China for defrauding Chinese state companies of US$100 million.

Douglas pointed to a public statement by Attorney General Vincent Byron, in which Byron confirmed that he had examined the application file of Ren and  concluded he was satisfied that that all of the due diligence that was expected was pursued and no red flags were raised.

The former Prime Minister  quoted Byron as saying there was nothing to indicate that the economic citizen had done anything wrong at the time when he was making the application for citizenship of St. Kitts and Nevis and was subsequently allowed to have the citizenship.

Douglas has accused the Prime Minister for misleading the nation in saying that Interpol had contacted his Labour Party administration.

He pointed  out that Interpol does not inform governments as it is an organisation that speaks directly to police at the national level in all member states.

“There would be no need whatsoever for the Office of the Prime Minister to be engaged in any kind of dialogue with Interpol. In each country at the national level, there is a designated senior police officer who has been trained and who interacts with Interpol whenever there is a case,” said Douglas, who told listeners that in St. Kitts and Nevis, the Assistant Commissioner of Police, Merclyn Hughes, is the Interpol Liasion Officer and was the person who was contacted by Interpol through the appropriate and proper correspondence in 2014.

“I believe that Ms. Hughes, if she is honest, would have told Dr. Harris that she never contacted the Prime Minister then (Douglas) or the Prime Minister’s Office,” said Douglas, who referenced a press statement from a London-based WICNews that quotes former Commissioner of Police, Dr. C.G. Walwyn, confirming that Ms. Hughes received the correspondence and shared it with him (Walwyn) and the police did what they were expected to do, “not arrest anyone because that was not the request of Interpol.”

Douglas emphatically denied that Hughes contacted him or his office in 2014 and accused Prime Minister Harris of trying “to lie his way out of the predicament that he has found himself in when he has been accused by the Chinese Government of corruption and not cooperating with regard to the request made to Dr. Harris by the Chinese Government.”

Last week the Prime Minhas blamed the former administration of Dr. Denzil Douglas for the controversy surrounding a Chinese national who is on Interpol’s wanted list.

During an address to the nation, Harris said his administration  is actively investigating the matter surrounding two economic citizens of Chinese descent, who applied for and obtained St. Kitts and Nevis citizenship in 2013  and have been living in the country since 2014.

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