– CJ awards defendants $75,000 each in costs
Chief Justice Ian Chang yesterday ruled against Cara Investments Limited, stating in his 15-page judgment that their legal battle against Attorney at law Christopher Ram and Scotiabank was dismissed on the grounds that the evidence did not suffice to support their material allegations of fact. The defendants were each awarded $75,000 in costs.
The action was filed with regards to the tender and sale of the Hotel Tower, which had encountered financial difficulty several years ago.
Cara Investments Limited, back in January 2000, through its directors, had moved to the courts and filed an injunction stating that Ram, who was appointed Receiver-Manager by Scotiabank, acted prejudicially and improperly did not maintain the standard of conduct and propriety which the Plaintiff had a legitimate expectation he would uphold.
Cara Investments further claimed that the two defendants were in breach of its Request for Proposals for the Hotel Tower Limited. The injunction filed was restraining the two defendants , his servants and/or agents from awarding and/or allocating the purchase of Hotel Tower Limited to anyone other than the Plaintiff without proceeding in accordance with due tender requirements, and without giving due consideration to the Plaintiff’s bid.
The injunction was also seeking to restrain the two defendants their servants and/or agents from awarding or allocating the purchase of Hotel Tower until an inquiry was conducted at the instance of the court as to the propriety and conformity with law of the bidding and selection process hereto.
Cara Investments Limited was seeking damages in excess of $1 million for the breach of contract and also in excess of $1 million for misrepresentation generally and to the shareholders of Hotel Tower Limited as to the bid of the Plaintiff, not taking into account their interests or as to no bid by it at all.
In an invited comment, Attorney at law Christopher Ram said that he was by no means surprised by the Chief Justice’s ruling. Ram opined that the case should not have reached so far since it had no merit. According to him, it was “a very spurious piece of action which was brought by Cara Investments Limited”.
Ram told Kaieteur News that one of his regrets is that the court had not awarded higher costs, which he believes would effectively discourage persons from filing frivolous proceedings.
Several years ago, Hotel Tower had experienced financial difficulty. Subsequently, Scotiabank which had loaned a significant sum of money (US$2,538,102) to the Hotel, appointed Ram as Receiver-Manager. Ram was tasked with managing the business in order to prepare it for sale. Ram later advertised the hotel for that purpose. One of the entities that had tendered for the hotel was Cara Investments Limited.
Before the process was completed, Cara Investments filed an injunction against Ram and Scotiabank asking the court to stop (Ram) from carrying out the receivership.
Christorpher Ram was represented by Senior Counsel Edward Luckhoo, while Scotiabank was represented by Senior Counsel Rex Mc Kay with Richard Fields S.C. and Bettina Glasford.
Cara Investment Limited’s action was initially brought by Senior Counsel Ashton Chase, who was succeeded by Sanjeev Datadin and Dr. Fenton Ramsahoye, S.C.
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