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Beverly Hills house to pass to Holness children

Published:Monday | February 15, 2016 | 2:35 PM
Bailey

Prior to Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) leader Andrew Holness' statement providing details on the construction and source of financing of his Beverly Hills house, The Gleaner had obtained documents showing that in 2011, the title for the property was transferred from a St Andrew businesswoman to ADMAT Incorporated, registered in St Lucia.

ADMAT is named after Holness' two sons, Adam and Matthew.

Attorney-at-law Patrick Bailey, who acknowledged signing the transfer

documents as a witness, revealed yesterday that the JLP leader holds a 50 per cent stake in the company, with the other two shareholders, Adam and Matthew Holness, each holding a 25 per cent stake in the entity.

He says Holness' wife, Juliet, stands to inherit her husband's stake in the company through his will.

TRUST COMPANY FOR CHILDREN

According to Bailey, ADMAT was set up as a trust company for Holness' children.

He says the purchase of the Beverly Hills property was done to ensure that it passes to them in the future.

The documents obtained by The Gleaner indicate that the transfer title was signed with a notation "while on a visit to Jamaica". But Bailey says this is standard legal practice under Jamaican law when an overseas company is involved in the transfer of titles locally. He explained that Section 152 of the Registration of Titles Act requires that land transfers be witnessed by an attorney.

"I think what is giving people problem is the words 'on a visit to Jamaica'," he said, acknowledging that he understood the concerns.

However, Bailey asserted that it was the attorney for the previous owner of the property who insisted on the use of the notation, but insisted that it is allowed under Jamaican law.

"What the Titles Office does is that they send a requisition and ask where was it witnessed. And they usually have the formats 'witnessed in Jamaica', 'witnessed while in Jamaica' or 'witnessed while on a visit to Jamaica' ... different variations to show that it was signed in Jamaica," he explained.

"And the Titles Office accepted that and processed the matter and the title is now in the name of ADMAT Incorporated," he said.