February 15, 2013
Palm Cay has moved to reassure the public that the legal troubles of co-owner Paul Cummins have nothing to do with the high-end residential development. Yesterday, The Tribune reported that Mr Cummins is due to stand trial in the UK following an investigation into money laundering carried out by Britain’s Serious Organised Crime Agency. “Your article of February 14 refers to a UK legal process involving Palm Cay minority shareholder Paul Cummins,” said development representative Marc Goldberg.
“It is not appropriate for us to comment on the process, which is under the jurisdiction of the UK courts. However, we feel it is important to reassure your readers that the case has nothing whatsoever to do with Palm Cay. “Contrary to your headline, Mr Cummins is not the ‘chief’ of the resort.” The Tribune disclosed that Mr Cummins, 51, who splits his time between Nassau, where he has a property in Port New Providence, and Cheshire in the United Kingdom, was arrested in 2010 and later charged with money laundering and false accounting offences.
He is due to stand trial in the UK on July 29. It is alleged that Mr Cummins laundered money, believed to be hundreds of thousands of pounds, for a convicted drug trafficker through a property development in Spain – the proceeds of which passed through financial systems in various countries, including the Bahamas. The trial for Mr Cummins and four other British nationals is expected to last six weeks.
The Serious Organised Crime Agency (SOCA) is an elite unit, sometimes dubbed “the British FBI,” which tackles serious and organised crime that affects the UK and its citizens. A spokesperson said: “British national Paul Cummins, aged 51, from Cheshire in the United Kingdom, was arrested in 2010 and later charged with money laundering and false accounting offences. He is due to stand trial on July 29 along with four other British nationals.”
In his statement yesterday, Mr Goldberg noted that the owners of the resort have made a “considerable” investment in creating on of the Bahamas’ most sought-after residential and resort communities. He said the board has recently committed substantial further funds to the development, and will continue to do so. “The development has created in excess of 50 jobs for Bahamians and continues to deliver on its huge potential as an engine of economic growth for the islands,” Mr Goldberg said. “We should also point out that all investments in Palm Cay has been with the express authorisation of the Central Bank of the Bahamas. “We believe that Palm Cay is a development of which all Bahamians and investors worldwide can be proud and we look forward to an exciting year as we continue to grow the project and its community of residents.”
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