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June 1 start for property freeze lawsuit

Published:Thursday | January 28, 2010 | 12:00 AM

Barbara Gayle, Staff Reporter

The lawsuit seeking orders to confiscate the assets of a Jamaican woman who was charged with money laundering in 2007 after US$1.3 million was found in a freezer at her house in St Catherine has been set for June 1.

Delores Elizabeth Miller's case is the first to be brought by the Assets Recovery Agency under the Proceeds of Crime Act of 2007.

On Tuesday, lawyers representing Miller went to the Court of Appeal and got an order to file an additional affidavit.

Application refused

Miller had first applied in the Supreme Court to file an affidavit saying that since 2006 she had no contact with two men who are defendants in the suit and did not know their whereabouts. The application was refused and she appealed.

The money-laundering charge against Miller has been adjourned sine die (without a date being set.)

The defendants - Miller, Rohan Anthony Fisher, Ricardo Fisher and Karen Vassell - are joint owners of properties, bank accounts and several motor vehicles.

The agency was successful in 2007 in securing orders freezing the assets of the four defendants.

Disposal barred

Supreme Court judge Gloria Smith, in granting the freeze orders, had barred the defendants from disposing of, or dealing with the assets, which include six properties, a minibus, two motorcycles, J$9 million and US$60,000 in their accounts in banks and building societies. The US$1,350,000 is among the assets frozen.

One of the properties is at West Cumberland, St Catherine; three are at Hellshire Glades, St Catherine, and two are located at Plantation Village, St Ann.

The agency has the power, under the act, to apply to the court to confiscate the assets of perpetrators of all forms of criminal activities.