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Chinese Contractor ‘Stole Documents’

TRIBUNE BUSINESS STORIES

• Baha Mar claiming ‘deliberate sabotage’ http://bit.ly/1M2...

• Baha Mar: 60 days to ‘financial devastation’ for local contractors http://bit.ly/1HY...

• Baha Mar’s contractor ‘tardy’ over workforce http://bit.ly/1Mp...

By KHRISNA VIRGIL

Tribune Staff Reporter

kvirgil@tribunemedia.net

BAHA MAR has accused China Construction America’s (CCA) on-site staff of allegedly trying to remove important documents and computers from the compound which are essential to the resort’s assessment of what remains of the construction process to allow for an opening date to be set.

According to a motion filed in Delaware’s Bankruptcy Court last week and obtained by The Tribune, Baha Mar said these actions have raised reasonable concern – adding that it believes CCA may have been using false accounting practices to enlarge its costs and expenses.

Baha Mar said a preliminary review of accounting records kept in CCA’s offices on site appear to consist of large amounts of reimbursement applications by CCA’s and subcontractors’ employees, “but the underlying records suggest these expenses appear to have been incurred for personal expenditures such as cosmetics and groceries,” the court document said.

In several incidents, which happened over a week-long period between June 30, 2015 and July 8, 2015, Baha Mar’s security team allegedly observed CCA employees trying to remove accounting documents and laptop computers by stuffing them in suitcases. Baha Mar added that throughout the premises there are signs that documents have been removed from various locations.

These incidents involved a female CCA employee who was caught by security trying to remove documents by placing them under her clothing, the court filing said.

Baha Mar said the most troubling and telling example of misbehaviour occurred less than 24 hours after the Chapter 11 cases commenced. The resort accused CCA employees of disconnecting the electricity supply at the compound.

“Sometime between 8am and 8.30am on Tuesday, June 30, the debtors (Baha Mar) became aware that power for the entire project had been suddenly shut down,” the court document says. “Shortly thereafter the debtors received a call from CCA’s Construction Director Mark Vice, who informed him that Tiger Wu (the) current executive vice-president of CCA and (China State Construction Engineering Corporation Ltd) appointee on Baha Mar Ltd’s board of directors intended to fly from the Bahamas to New Jersey (or New York) that same day and needed to retrieve his passport from his Crystal Palace office. In response, the debtors informed Mr Vice that Baha Mar needed its power turned back on.

“Upon subsequently gaining access to the project’s farm of back-up generators, the debtors and their consultants were told by CCA’s own on site security staff that other CCA personnel had been in the building earlier that morning and were responsible for the power outage.

“Thereafter, the debtors were informed by CCA personnel that they had been instructed to cut the power until CCA could get into their offices.

“Given the ongoing safety threat presented by the potential for sustained power outages, and notwithstanding the debtors had already implemented procedures for the orderly retrieval of personal items, the debtors had no choice but to acquiesce to CCA’s demands and allow certain of its personnel wider access to the Tower J offices to gain the return of certain items, including Mr Wu’s passport.

“Sure enough, once the debtors had done so, the power was restored to the project at approximately 12 noon to 12.30 pm that same day.”

Baha Mar said resort officials have reasons to believe that successful attempts to remove project documents from the premises have taken place. They said there is evidence that laptops, owned by the resort under its master contracts, have been removed.

“Although the offices at the project’s premises designated for use by Tiger Wu and David Wang (another CCA executive) include docking stations and/or power cords for laptops in connection with their work on the project, the actual laptops, which undoubtedly contain critical project documents on the hard drives, which, in turn, Baha Mar owns under the Master Construction Contract, have been removed from the project facilities. In addition, throughout the project premises, there are signs that documents have been removed from various locations,” Baha Mar said.

There are several other instances where officials believe there were attempts to steal documents from the compound, according to a declaration signed by Tiny Whiddon, Baha Mar’s senior vice-president of intelligence and campus security.

On Wednesday, July 1, two CCA subcontractors were allegedly observed by Baha Mar security attempting to leave the Crystal Palace loading dock with a large black travel roller bag. Upon inspection, the bag contained a black Dell computer, a printer, and miscellaneous computer accessories.

The next day, four CCA subcontractors were allegedly attempting to leave Crystal Palace with four large suitcases. When the luggage was inspected, security personnel discovered binders and documents, which Baha Mar believes included receipts for expenditures and reimbursements for the project.

Several days later, another CCA subcontractor was seen trying to leave Crystal Palace with a suitcase, which was found to contain a laptop.

Baha Mar has been requesting the return of project documents, the motion said, such as the hard drives of the laptops that had been in the project offices of Mr Wu and Mr Wang, but those requests have been refused.

Additionally CCA has not complied with any requests for information about project documents on its own servers, Baha Mar said.

In the wake of these circumstances, Baha Mar said, even at this early stage of its Chapter 11 case the only hope of obtaining a complete and accurate set of project documents depends upon the expedient use of the comprehensive discovery powers afforded by applicable bankruptcy law.

CCA on Friday denied the allegations, saying in a statement that Baha is trying to deflect attention from its own mismanagement of the stalled resort.

On June 29, Baha Mar CEO Sarkis Izmirlian announced that the mega-resort in Cable Beach had voluntarily filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in the United States, in order to finish construction and open the property as soon as possible.

Baha Mar is seven months behind its December 2014 opening deadline.

Comments

TalRussell 4 years, 8 months ago

My advice Comrade Izmirlian, is even if the Chinese acknowledge his presence at the planned China meeting, upon his return Cable Beach, best he immediately goes Lyford Cay Laboratory do some stool tests - cuz the outcome is certain, he will test positive for having catch some kinds parasitic organisms during his China trip.
That stuff can gives you long reoccurring discharges stools that has been known last years. Full force it's effect should start occurring within days being back at Cable Beach,
Then, Izmirlian will needs head right over Super Valu to loads up car's trunk plenty dat don't squeeze da Charmin. Make sure he got's toilet phone really close by, cuz he going need be able reach for it, when it starts rings with a 'call's' from da "Fisherman's From Cooper's Town."
Oh yeah, Izmirlian and Papa does deserve each others company.

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Sickened 4 years, 8 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

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Sickened 4 years, 8 months ago

Come on Tribune, you know my comment was accurate!

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banker 4 years, 8 months ago

The Chinese cannot be trusted, and neither can the PLP and their supporters. Perry Christie and company are debauched soul-destroying proof that poor breeding can go horribly wrong. The trip to China will prove that Allyson is a confoundedly ill-bred lecher and a heinous heart-sickening unspeakably offensive, anti-patriotic poor excuse for a human being. Bring back the only real leader, HAI to sort this out. History will show, that we will one day find the moral strength to tear down the Stalinist statue of Swindling at the airport, just like the Saddam Madass statues came down, and put one up for HAI.

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Well_mudda_take_sic 4 years, 8 months ago

It is now abundantly clear that CCA, as the primary general contractor, has adopted a scorched earth policy and deliberately sabotaged the completion of the Baha Mar development project. And to think our Christie-led PLP government has taken the side of the two main Chinese enterprises involved in the project (CCA and CEXIMB), thereby essentially abandoning the interests of the Irzmirlian family and dooming the Baha Mar development. The monstrous buildings erected on Cable Beach are likely to remain empty until they are demolished many many years from now. The unoccupied buildings will quickly fall into a state of vandalized disrepair; serving only as a fitting tomb stone of Christie and Maynard-Gibson's mutual legacy! The Bahamian people have finally come to rue the day they voted these two demons into office!!

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Well_mudda_take_sic 4 years, 8 months ago

Christie is not respectfully regarded as a head of state by the Chinese and he knows it. He was summoned to China for discussions on the Baha Mar project, but feared the Bahamian people (and Baha Mar) would see him going to China as tantamount to an abrogation on his part of the sovereignty of the Commonwealth of The Bahamas and all of the constitutional rights of its citizens. But truth be told, Christie's willingness to send a huge contingent of his minions to China, headed by the most untrustworthy and incompetent Maynard-Gibson, sends precisely the message he did not want sent to the Bahamian people: The sovereignty of the Bahamas has been sold by the Christie-led PLP government to China in exchange for "favours" that only Christie and his political friends and business cronies will derive benefit from. For the rest of us, we will soon all be saying: "Hey buddy, can you spare a dime!"

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TalRussell 4 years, 8 months ago

Comrade Banker, here you go again with personal attack characterizations of which you are either unwilling/incapable of presenting Tribune readers solid facts - except the obviousness behind such insults made against Honourabel PM and his AG?

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banker 4 years, 8 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

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Islandgirl 4 years, 8 months ago

Can we use this as a starting point for investigative journalism as opposed to the reporting that goes on this country? Athena Damianos and Nikki Kelly are missed. What do you say, Tribune?

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Reader 4 years, 8 months ago

And just think, Banker... You have just skimmed the surface of what's been happening under the PLP administration over the years. Yes where are the replacements for the likes of a Nikki "Tell it like it is" Kelly. Now that was a lady who could be called a fine investigative journalist. Maybe we need to bring the "No spin zone" to the Tribune.

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sheeprunner12 4 years, 8 months ago

This is a precarious situation ............ Izzie wants to protect his $800M investment, The EXIM bank needs to get its money, CCA/CCESC wants to protect its reputation for future contracts and the Bahamian government is on FDI life support ............ he who holds the money, holds the power ........... that is why the talks are going on in China .......... bad for Izzie & Perry

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sheeprunner12 4 years, 8 months ago

I had to re-read this story ............. I am still scratching my head ............. and it is looking worse by the hour

If the Chinese "stole documents" from Bahamar, what will we describe the outcome of this Chinese Summit ...... how will we describe the "steal" that the Chinese will soon get because Izzie and Perry are so scared shitless of the Chinese powerbrokers ............... this is a serious slippery slope for our country .............. what will this outcome COST us Madam AG????????

The Chinese clearly has the balance of power in this saga ............. it should make us most uncomfortable

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MonkeeDoo 4 years, 8 months ago

Izzie and Perry should be scared of the Chinkies - and way beyond shitless. These people don't fool around like the Mafia and Drug Barons. When people in the PRC get out of line they are put into a line of fire.

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Baha10 4 years, 8 months ago

Looking "dead", but not so "good'!?!

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realfreethinker 4 years, 8 months ago

Allyson Mayonnaise Gibson negotiating on our behalf ????. WOW we are really F..ked now.Get the vaseline Bahamas it may make it a little more bearable

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TalRussell 4 years, 8 months ago

Tribune's front page story headline: Chinese Contractor ‘Stole Documents.’ But in the story it reads; "Baha Mar has accused China Construction America’s (CCA) on-site staff of allegedly trying to remove important documents and computers from the compound."

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jusscool 4 years, 8 months ago

THis beginin to look and sound like a soap opera! What next?

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John 4 years, 8 months ago

The hypocrisy of it all is that Izmirilin was so ridiculed for filing for bankruptcy protection in a Deleware court, but the Bahamian has no problem fly a delegation all the way to China to meet with the Chinese, who claims they are "too busy" to come to Nassau. The wisdom of Izmirilin filing in Deleware is that, if no settlement is reached in China, the court will have to act on the bankruptcy filing, with or without the blessings of the Bahamas courts. China bank, the China Construction Company and Bah Mar are all international companies, and as the complainant Izmirilin has a right to chose a venue for his court action. While the Bahamas may not be a party to the lawsuit or may not have equity in Bah Mar, it does have interest (financial) and otherwise) in the project. The country suffered loss at Bah Mar's failure to open., and stands to benefit if the project does open. Furthermore the attorney general herself has personal (family) interest in Bah Mar, as do other members of the government, and she has been personally involved in the Bah Mar project as an attorney. This does not make the Bahamas the best venue for Izmirilin to file his lawsuit. And since the Chinese government has interests in Both the China Bank and the China Construction Company, Izmirilin would definitely not want to file his lawsuit in that country.

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John 4 years, 8 months ago

If Izmirilin can produce sufficient evidence to convince the Deleware court that there was possible collusion between the China Bank and the China Construction Company to sabotage and delay Bah Mar, or if he can convince the court that China Construction Company, either intentionally or through negligence or for whatever reason produced shoddy work and/or did not complete in a timely manner and caused the delay of Bah Mar, to the detriment of the owners and/or others, Izmirilin will receive bankruptcy protection. If he prevails in proving his case of collusion and sabotage against the two companies, he may not be required to spend another red cent to get Bah Mar finished. The law requires an aggrieved party to be put back in the position he would have been in before the grievance took place and since Bah Mar should have been completed since December 2014, the courts may require these companies to complete the project at their own expense. The courts may also require compensation to bah Mar, for loss of income for example, requiring one or both of these companies to pay Bah Mar for all the income it would've generated from December to now, and including the additional time required to complete Bah Mar. This can amount to hundred of millions of dollars. And then there can also be penalties. If it is proven that China Bank or the China Construction Company or both did not act in good faith or was negligent they can be fined by the courts. Izmirilin may also be able to recover punitive damages "for pain and suffering". He need only call the prime minister to prove this as the pm claims that Izmirilin appeared to be losing his mind. This can easily be a billion dollar lawsuit.

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