AG moves to court to have Haitians’ case against Govt tossed out
— after applicant claimed he was duped into filing lawsuit
Attorney General and Senior Counsel Anil Nandlall has moved to the court to have the case brought by Allandres Archer on behalf of 26 Haitians who were being deported, dismissed in the wake of Archer’s revelation that he was duped into taking the government to court.
In the Notice of Application filed by Nandlall, the High Court was alerted about a video made by Archer on January 6, in which he had alleged that he was duped into hiring Attorney-at-Law Darren Wade to take the government to court back in December and he was thus pulling out from that action.
“The court must satisfy itself that the proceedings do not suffer the defect of lack of authorization from he who seeks to move the court… the respondent in a video recording obtained from the National Communication Network (NCN) indicated that the respondent had no knowledge that he was the person bringing the action against the government of Guyana, represented (by Nandlall).”
According to Nandlall in his application, all Attorney’s have a duty to ensure that their clients understand the contents of whatever documents they sign and the consequences from such documents.
He noted that the fact that the applicant did not know what he got himself into, renders the proceedings filed in his name null and void. Additionally, Nandlall pointed out that an Attorney-at-Law cannot represent someone who has indicated he did not authorize the proceedings.
In that light, Nandlall is seeking an order from the High court, staying Archer’s previous case until Nandlall’s application is determined. He is also seeking an order to strike out Archer’s case, as well as any further orders the court deems just and costs.
Moreover, the Attorney General has raised questions regarding the very documents Archer signed. In a recent broadcast of ‘Issues in the news’, Nandlall revealed discrepancies in the signatures of the documents… discrepancies he wants the police to investigate.
“I have looked at the signatures of the documents purportedly signed by Archer. The court documents. And the signatures are radically different. I want to hand over this entire matter to the police,” Nandlall had said.
The 26 Haitians who were at the center of the court case were suspected to be victims of human trafficking and were detained by the Guyana Police Force and subsequently placed in protective custody at the Hugo Chávez Centre since November 2020.
It was reported that 13 of the Haitians were first picked up by Police, acting on reasonable suspicion and information, at a hotel on South Road and taken to be interviewed by agents of the Trafficking in Persons (TIP) unit.
The remainder were picked up on November 8 after being intercepted at a Police roadblock in Linden. At the time, the Police became suspicious that they were being smuggled to Brazil through the Georgetown-Lethem route.
Chief Magistrate Sherdel Issacs-Marcus had subsequently issued deportation orders after being approached by the Immigration Office. However, the Association of Haitian Nationals in Guyana successfully approached acting Chief Justice Roxane George on December 3, to block the deportation until the constitutionality of their detention came up for the hearing of arguments.
Before that hearing with Archer as the applicant, however, the 26 Haitians suddenly vanished. When this publication visited the guest house they were staying at last month, it was confirmed that the 26 Haitians, including children, were no longer there.
Guyana Times was told that on December 17, two Route 94 mini-buses (which operate the Georgetown to Lethem route) picked up all the Haitians from the South Road building and left.