NASSAU, The Bahamas, Wednesday February 12, 2020 – A former minister under the previous Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) administration is suing the current government for malicious prosecution and false imprisonment, three months after being acquitted of several bribery charges.
Shane Gibson, who beat 15 bribery charges last November, has named the Attorney General, Commissioner of Police (COP) Anthony Ferguson, Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Garvin Gaskin, Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP) Debra Thompson and contractor Jonathan Ash – from whom he was accused of accepting $280,000 to expedite the approval of $1 million in payments owed by government for cleanup work done in the aftermath of Hurricane Matthew in 2016 – in the suit.
He is seeking damages for false imprisonment on August 2 and 3, 2017; damages for malicious prosecution arising out of multiple charges of extortion, bribery, misconduct in public office laid maliciously and without reasonable or probable cause; aggravated damages; exemplary damages; costs and further relief.
In addition to filing his lawsuit, Gibson has written official complaints to Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis, the Bahamas Bar Association and the chairman of the Police Service Commission seeking disciplinary proceedings against ASP Thompson, the top cop, DPP and Ash’s attorney, Alicia Bowe.
Gibson’s complaints to Prime Minister Minnis and the Police Service Commission point to the controversies arising from his trial, including the revelation that ASP Thompson met with key witnesses to synchronize their testimonies.
And in the letter to the Bar Association, he asked for disciplinary action to be taken against DPP Gaskin, in relation to the changes ASP Thompson made to the witness statements.
On November 27, 2019, Gibson was found not guilty on 15 counts of bribery, at the end of a six-week trial.