$90 Million Lawsuit: Govt To ‘Defend Vigorously’

February 23, 2015

Responding to the $90 million lawsuit filed by Allied Development over the loss of the City Waterfront lease, Attorney-General Trevor Moniz said the “Government views this action very seriously and will be defending it vigorously.”

Citing “costs and losses”, Michael MacLean’s Allied Development launched legal action over losing the lease, which they signed with the Corporation of Hamilton in late 2012. The RFP process to award the lease was criticised in an Ombudsman’s report, and the lease was overturned following a vote in Parliament in 2o14.

Earlier this month, Allied Trust and Allied Development Partners Limited filed legal documents seeking $90 million in financial compensation, saying they have “lost the ability to carry out the Waterfront development.”

In his affidavit, Michael MacLean alleged that his first contact with the new OBA administration was a few days after the General Election in December 2012, when he was invited to meet with then Premier Craig Cannonier at the Hamilton Princess.

The 17-page affidavit describes various meetings and conversations that allegedly took place about both the Waterfront lease and the Par-La-Ville development, and also alleged that Stephen Decosta, whose name first came to light as being on the “JetGate” flight, was involved in some of the contacts made.

In response to the legal action, Attorney-General Moniz said, “On February 9th, 2015 the Allied Trust and Allied Development Partners Limited commenced an action in the Supreme Court of Bermuda against the Attorney General and the Minister of Home Affairs, in which they seek various remedies, including constitutional relief and compensation in an amount of $90 million.

“The Government views this action very seriously and will be defending it vigorously. However, the issues are now before the Supreme Court, which will determine the facts in due course.

“Until then, the Government will respect the process and make no public comment on the action, as to do so would be quite inappropriate,” added the Attorney-General.

Click here for all our coverage of the City Waterfront plans

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Comments (42)

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  1. This is Sad says:

    Why does this guy Stephen DeCosta always keep coming up. Something smells really fishy here!

    • swing voter says:

      over paid political amateurs….should have let the old boys handle it. Craig Fahy and even Pettingill got sucked into the minor league vacuum

    • Just sayin says:

      DeCosta was C C side kick.

    • Mockingjay says:

      Now just imagine if this guy was a friend of Dr. Brown!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
      Two Bermudas

      • jt says:

        Yours and everyone else’s.

      • Onion says:

        In case you didn’t notice the top comment is how shady it is that he’s involved.

      • David Henry says:

        Hey Mockingjay Birdbrains,

        Speaking of Dr. Brown, where is your puppet master now? I mean, you and him would probably propose getting Beyonce to perform 90 times instead :)

    • Titanic says:

      ………………….WTF…………………………………………….and the Premier brings Craig back into the game saying everything is ok now. Premier Dunkley you got DUNKED!!!!!!!! You know you got played when your own supporters are asking why you took the worst player in the game off the BENCH!!!

  2. Terry says:

    You’d be surprised ‘This is Sad’.

    As an aside……………..Show me a poor fisherman

    Think about it.

  3. Huh says:

    Allied Development is very lucky the Govt. ended this ill-gotten lease. They should be paying them for saving their bacon. The way Bermuda is going, there’s no doubt they would have lost their shirt. IF they could find anyone silly enough to lend them money to build – I mean WHO in their right mind would lend them money to build after they found out the Landlord was the “wonky” Corporation of Hamilton and they looked into the background of the 4 x 6 = 262 year lease? Even if they could find a shady lender at sky-high interest rates, the buildings would likely remain empty or have very low occupancy for many years as rents would be way too high to make a profit and we already have tons of empty low priced space in town & with mergers and acquisitions galore…

    • Family Man says:

      Eighteen million dollars says you’re wrong.

    • Actually .... says:

      Allied Development never would have built anything. But, as I understand the lease, anyone else that wanted to do anything whatsoever on the waterfront would have had to deal with them. And that’s where they would have made out like bandits.

    • Build a Better Bermuda says:

      I think for them to show a case, they will need to show that they had sold plans, with solid investment to have pulled off what they proposed to do… and given they proposition, I do not see how that could be. We are already suffering from an excessive surplus of office real estate for probably the next decade and trouble enough to get hotel investment, I hope the courts will call in every ‘investor’ he claims would have had backing him for the monstrosity he was planning to validify their commitment

  4. Vote says:

    Same Decosta that can’t balance the books at CC gas stations, I forgot the fuel pumps weren’t working sounds like another Jetgate / Watergate

  5. James says:

    Michael McLean might want to take a look at section 13 (1) of the Bermuda Constitution, which allows the Government take possession of basically any property they want.

  6. clearasmud says:

    This is what happens when the government creates a law and makes it retroactive in order to try to undo a lawful contract. Even if You might think that the council at city hall are a bunch of idiots the government cannot prove that they did not have the authority to do what they did in signing that contract. We will spend millions defending this and still have to pay millions to that developer who probably never would have put together the funding for the waterfront!

    • Mockingjay says:

      The measures that certain people would go through to deny certain people.
      Well this is Bermuda and the Oligarchy were/are good at that.

  7. metro says:

    um, excuse me Huh, I don’t know if you saw Sir John Swan’s proposal for the waterfront,but that is the type of thing Bermuda needs, growth and development. every year I go to key west for the world championship offshore powerboat race, off the chain, why, because they cater to the people that come to their town.it’s a place where you can walk the main street, drinking, do they have much problems with people being drunk and unruly, heck no. I always say that you really have to be screwing up to get in trouble there. my point is, expand our horizons, people don’t mind spending money, they just want value for it. at one point, the hospitality seemed to steer away from the conventional vacationing tourist, and target convention groups,cool, but why target people that you are not prepared to cater to.

  8. Sky Pilot says:

    they dont have a leg to stand on…Case Closed!

  9. tom cooke says:

    Not sure if I understand all that’s going on. Only that we.. are going to end up paying for the COR screw ups.. and come May they will be gone and they could not care less….

  10. somuchless says:

    I don’t think Michael got the email. The gov is broke.

  11. Coffee says:

    Mr Maclean I would advise you to get the best lawyer available to filet the backside of the defendants , namely every OBA personality who had a hand in destroying your legal right to develop the Waterfront and Parliville …. Go for the jugular .

    • hmmm says:

      Are you offering this as professional legal advice?

    • Jus' Wonderin' says:

      More so the Corporation for approving it…so take Donal, Carlton, Graeme, to court. Legal right lmfao…this guy wouldn’t have done ****!

  12. San George says:

    The OBA government is out of order. The prior government had to pay BAS, this government will have to pay Mr. McClean if the courts find that he has been wronged/damaged as a result of this action. The courts are what make us a civil society. Without the rule of law we have anarchy.

    • Mockingjay says:

      If you haven’t noticed this O.B.A./ubp, they have no rules.
      Oh I forgot they have ONE rule that was stated by one of their members (We make no apologies for our F!@# up’s).

  13. Bermuda Jake says:

    No one shares glory in this. A lease obtained by a process described as a flawed one by the Ombudsman. A $90m claim that will very likely be struck out at the first instance. A CoH gone wild with backing deals with no economic merit and a former Premier and his “business partner” playing let’s make a deal. Well done, Bermuda Government, for closing this fiasco down. The people of Bermuda have enough facing us with the recession, debt and layoffs. Attack this claim in the courts and let’s move on.

    • clearasmud says:

      You put too much faith in the Ombudsman. What exactly is her area of legal expertise? The government took over the finances of the corporation based on her report that they could not verify and which was not a financial report. Then they decided to get an estimate of the value of the contract AFTER they voided it. We are in trouble!

      • hmmm says:

        From fullbright commission website:

        In 2005, Arlene Brock was appointed by the then Governor of Bermuda as the island’s first national Ombudsman for an eight year term. She served for three years on the Board of Directors of the International Ombudsman Institute (IOI), the only global association of public sector Ombudsman. In that capacity she was also the Regional Vice-President for the Caribbean and Latin America and chaired the Board’s International Training Committee. In 2013 she was awarded an Honorary Life Membership in the IOI (only the 14th person since the award was established in 1993). Her prior legal practice included: Interim (judicial) Magistrate in Family Court, Bermuda; insolvency litigaton at Blake, Cassels & Graydon, Toronto (their first black attorney) and reinsurance litigation at Milligan-Whyte & Smith, Bermuda. Ms. Brock also worked in Cambridge, MA., USA with Conflict Management Inc. (the corporate arm of the Harvard Negotiation Program which pioneered the “interest-based” negotiation /mediation methodology). She briefly interned with the New York office of the U.N. Center for Human Rights. She holds: a B.A. from McGill University, Montreal; a J.D. from Osgoode Hall, York University. Toronto; and a LL.M. from Harvard Law School, Cambridge, MA., USA. Ms. Brock was recently appointed to the first standing Judicial and Legal Services Committee that advises the Governor of Bermuda on judicial appointments and discipline. She will be Bermuda’s first Fulbright Scholar.

      • Bermuda Jake says:

        She has an LLM from Harvard.

        The problem with so many issues in Bermuda is that people want an us and them narrative. According to the investigation done by the Ombudsman – who is not an OBA member – the lease was agreed with an invalid and improper process. The fact that CC and his partner may have interfered with it after the fact doesn’t validate the process for awarding the contract – something they had nothing to do with.

        I support the Government – OBA or PLP – when they stand up to correct these wrongs.

  14. The Dark Knight Returns says:

    Yet CC was allowed to return to Cabinet.

  15. Creamy says:

    I hope Maclean understands the concept of loser pays. This could be an expensive exercise for him.

  16. aceboy says:

    If this guy gets paid 10 cents it will be too much. The whole thing is ridiculous. Get elected with your buddies and then commit a huge chunk of this island’s most valuable real estate to a lease for 262 years? With no checks and balances?

    Team Hamilton is DONE at the next election now that the actual rate payers have the vote back. Take THAT to the bank. How can it be right for this crowd to benefit from Hamilton land that belongs to all of us.

    What happened to the Black Mayor’s conference? The same people who were hoodwinked by (or in cahoots with) that con artist signed this lease. Defend that Coffee et al.