While criminal charges were promised, Commissioner General of the Guyana Revenue Authority (GRA) has filed a lawsuit
against the Kaieteur News, its Publisher Glenn Lall and Editor-in-Chief Adam Harris, seeking in excess of $500M as well as an injunction preventing this publication from repeating a number of allegations against Sattaur.
Sattaur yesterday successfully secured an interim injunction against this publication from Justice Sandra Kurtzious from circulating or causing to be published any libelous statements against him.
In the court documents filed by Sattaur and delivered to Kaieteur News yesterday, Sattaur claims that this publication has libeled him on no less than nine times in recent weeks, dating back as far as August 31.
Sattaur’s writ was filed yesterday by his attorneys R. Satram, CV Satram and Mahendra Satram. Kaieteur News has been ordered to respond within 10 days.
Sattaur who lists his home address as 136 Plantation Goedverwagting, East Coast Demerara, claims that he has a property worth $40M, and is a chartered accountant and member of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants of England and the Institute of Chartered of Accountants of Guyana.
He said that he is the head of the Guyana Revenue Authority, which is responsible for the collection of an average of $125B in revenues annually.
According to Sattaur in his writ, he caused as Commissioner General of the GRA, an investigation into the importation of two Lexus LX 570 motor vehicles into Guyana by Narootandeo and Gharbassi Brijjnanan under the re-migrants scheme.
He is claiming that the investigating officers of the GRA discovered that the two vehicles were not kept or used by the
re-migrants in breach of the Customs Act and the conditions of the grant of the duty free concession, and were being used by Lall and his wife Bhena.
According to Sattaur, the investigation led to the seizure of the vehicles at the end of August and that this action has been challenged before the Chief Justice (Ag) Ian Chang.
Sattaur is also alleging that following the seizure of the vehicles, Lall called him from an overseas number and threatened to use the Kaieteur News to malign his character and destroy him.
“He accused me of being a thief,” claims Sattaur, who argues further that the telephone conversation had been reported to the Guyana Police Force.
According to Sattaur, following the seizure of the vehicles and alleged threats against him, a campaign was launched against him by the Kaieteur News to defame, malign, degrade and humiliate him in the performance of his duties.
Sattaur cited a number of articles published in Kaieteur News in defence of his claim.
According to Sattaur, “I have been greatly injured and disparaged in my character and reputation and in my position as Commissioner General…I have been lowered in the estimation of right thinking members of society generally and have suffered egregious injury.”
Sattaur claims he is fearful that unless restrained by the Court, Lall and his co-accusers will continue what he calls the malicious and unwarranted attacks on him and his office.
In an application to the court made earlier this month by the Brijnanans, the GRA has since been ordered to show cause why the decision to seize the vehicles should not be quashed on the grounds that the decision was not whimsical, capricious, unreasonable and contrary to the rules of natural justice.
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