POND ISLAND – “In the article titled, “Prosecution confirms Lee under investigation”, published on January 9, 2018, it stated that Honorable Minister of VROMI, Christophe Emmanuel, filed a complaint against his colleague, Minister Lee, with the Prosecutor’s Office in early December. This is false information,” a press release from the Minister of VROMI Christophe Emmanuel said on Tuesday afternoon.
“Prior to the above mentioned article, the Daily Herald published on December 19, 2017, that during the radio program “Online with Fernando Clark”, Minister Emmanuel announced that he filed a complaint with the Prosecutor’s Office against Minister Lee for misuse of his Government-issued fuel bonds for his business and placing his Government owned vehicle license plate on his personal vehicle post Hurricane Irma. At no time did Minister Emmanuel file a criminal complaint at the Prosecutor office against Minister Lee.
“Minister Christopher Emmanuel submitted a letter on December 8, 2017 to the Council of Ministers, which was copied to The Governor, Parliament of Sint Maarten and The Prosecutor’s Office. The letter was in regards to Minister Lee placing the MR4 number plate on his personal vehicle and statements made in regards to the Government issued bond book for the purchasing of fuel.
“What may seem as a direct reaction to the before mentioned article of the Daily Herald published on January 9, 2018, the Public Prosecutor’s Office of Sint Maarten published a press release on January 9, 2018 stating that there is no criminal investigation ongoing against Mr. Emil Lee at this moment in relation to abuse of car number plates or theft of gasoline/using government fuel bonds to purchase fuel for personal use in the last months of 2017 after the hurricane Irma. The press release also clarified that there is no formal complaint at the Public Prosecutor’s Office against Mr. Emil Lee about this subject.
“On a number of occasions, The Daily Herald has published false information, which goes against the ethics and good practices of journalism. Publishing an inaccurate statement without receiving any clarification or information from the Minister of VROMI is slanderous and unacceptable,” the Minister of VROMI’s press release concludes.