Sun | Dec 11, 2016

Land deal took him to hell and back

Published:Sunday | February 22, 2015 | 12:00 AM
Oswest Senior Smith is desperately trying to get the matter back before the courts.

A real estate agent who says he has been to 'hell and back' because of a land deal is now frustrated with the justice system after a lawsuit he filed in 2009 came to a sudden halt.

Stafford Dixon's problem is that Mr Justice Horace Marsh who began hearing the case in February 2012 retired in September last year leaving his case

part-heard.

The case was set for continuation on several dates in 2013 and 2014 in the Supreme Court but the judge was not available .

Now the case will have to start over and Dixon says it will be very costly for him. Attorney-at-law Oswest Senior Smith, who is representing Dixon, says he has written to Chief Justice Zaila McCalla and the Registrar of the Supreme Court, Pamela Mason, about the situation and is awaiting a response.

Signed under duress

Dixon has sued attorney-at-law Patrick Bailey for $89 million arising from a

consent agreement signed on December 23, 2007 for the attorney to pay $105 million arising from the transfer of lands without the alleged knowledge of the claimant.

But Bailey is contending that he signed the consent agreement under duress.

"I attended the said meeting under duress, being fearful that if I did not attend, the claimant would proceed to have criminal charges instituted against me, and I feared that this would cause further deterioration in my weakened state of health such that my very life would be at risk," said Bailey as he alleged that a police officer from the Fraud Squad had advised him on December 6, 2007 that Dixon had filed a complaint against him.

Bailey filed a counterclaim against Dixon for the return of $6 million he reportedly paid to Dixon on December 12, 2007 and $10 million paid on February 8, 2008.

According to Bailey, Dixon was fully aware of the transfer of the said lands to Villa Palm Estates Ltd of which Dixon was a director and shareholder.

Application to surrender

Bailey said the company was incorporated by Dixon and his partner for the development of the land. He said in 2003 on behalf of the said Villa Palm Estates, Dixon signed an application to surrender the existing certificate of title and for the issue of new certificates of title with respect to the said land.

Dixon in his claim stated that Bailey signed the agreement to pay him $105 million for the land. He contends that Bailey permitted the land to be transferred without his knowledge.

"I have been to hell and back because of the land deal," said the 65-year-old Dixon as he charged that everything he worked for is in the 22-acre property now known as Villa Palm Estates near Dumbeholden, St Catherine.

According to Dixon, he had planned to build houses on the land and then sell them and the transaction has caused him embarrassment, suffering, hunger, pain and frustration.

Dixon argued that he is suffering great financial hardships and is looking for the issue to be resolved expeditiously.

- Barbara Gayle