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Pettingill won’t comment on alleged corruption probe

Attorney General Mark Pettingill has refused to respond to Opposition questions over whether Government is investigating allegations of corruption within the Progressive Labour Party.

The questions came from PLP MP for Sandys North Michael Scott during a discussion of the budget for Legal Affairs in the House of Assembly.

“During the last sitting of this House, the Attorney General responded to interpolation from this side of the House that there had been no prosecution of any member of the PLP for corruption, notwithstanding the allegation is hurled at the PLP — to which the AG's response was ‘not yet',” Mr Scott said.

“Can the learned AG confirm to this House whether a specialist prosecution attorney has been engaged by the Department of Public Prosecution from the UK to conduct or prepare for a corruption prosecution in this country?”

Hints of corruption under the previous administration have been a long-standing flashpoint in parliamentary debate.

However, Mr Pettingill declined to elaborate.

“Prosecutions are under the remit of the Director of Public Prosecutions, appointed by the Governor under the Constitution, so it's not appropriate for me to advise about potential investigations,” the Attorney General responded.

“With regard to matters like TCI (Turks and Caicos Islands), which had extensive corruption cases — they took years to come before the courts.”

Mr Pettingill added: “Sometimes these things take a long time to put together.”

In a follow-up question, Mr Scott asked the AG: “Is there counsel engaged in management of preparation for the specific purpose of prosecution relating to corruption against persons yet to be identified?”

Again, Mr Pettingill refused, telling the House: “From my constitutional position, it would be entirely inappropriate, if I had that knowledge, to answer that.”

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Published March 06, 2014 at 8:00 am (Updated March 05, 2014 at 10:41 pm)

Pettingill won’t comment on alleged corruption probe

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