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Updated: Dion Smith Released From Custody Without Charge

Dion Smith is pictured during the election campaign.

Dion Smith is pictured during the election campaign.

By RICARDO WELLS

Tribune Staff Reporter

rwells@tribunemedia.net

DION Smith was released from police custody without being charged on Friday as investigations into alleged “theft by reason of employment” at the Bahamas Agricultural and Industrial Corporation continued.

Mr Smith was appointed as executive chairman of the organisation under the Christie administration.

The former deputy speaker of the House of Assembly was the ninth person arrested, questioned and released in connection with the matter; however, no formal charges have been brought against anyone.

On Tuesday, police said seven employees had been taken into custody and, on Thursday, police said another worker was also questioned and later released. The employees were taken into custody after reports that some items were allegedly taken from BAIC on the night of the election and the day after.

A source close to the matter told The Tribune that police suspected the employees of allegedly attempting to destroy files and remove evidence from BAIC that could possibly show funds were being misappropriated.

According to officers, Mr Smith, the former Nassau Village MP, turned himself over to authorities shortly after 4pm on Thursday in the presence of his attorney, Wayne Munroe, QC. Mr Munroe has maintained that there was no evidence of anything being stolen and to his understanding the employees only removed personal items from the building.

Mr Munroe said it was also his understanding that an inventory check was conducted and “nothing was found to be missing”.

When contacted yesterday, Mr Smith said he did not want to comment on the matter.

Meanwhile, his attorney has raised questions over the arrest, suggesting it was politically motivated.

“When you have a situation that the only individuals arrested are the ones with PLP affiliation, and if you are talking about items that you claim to be missing from an office in which loads of people have access - everyone - including the FNM supporters ought to have been arrested . . .”

Last week, Mr Munroe told The Nassau Guardian that his client decided to watch the May 10 general election results at BAIC last Wednesday and reportedly brought his speaker and television to the building.

He also claimed that the former MP and several BAIC workers packed these items and other personal belongings after Mr Smith learned he had lost his re-election bid.

Mr Smith was out of the country for a few days and returned last week.

Investigations are continuing.

Comments

ThisIsOurs 5 months ago

If only personal property was removed, why were items returned?

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BMW 5 months ago

Exactly and why would a sitting mp be out of the country during an election???

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tell_it_like_it_is 5 months ago

There's obviously more to this story than the Tribune is saying or allowed to say. Why would they go through the trouble of arresting this MP if nothing was missing. Something isn't adding up.

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John 5 months ago

operatives is the key word..go figure!

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TalRussell 5 months ago

Comrades! Immediately after the news broke about what really happened over at the offices Bahamaland Agricultural and Industrial Corporation (BAIC) - I been wondering when the Tribune reporters and bloggers are going get down to the most obvious and juicy part of the story that has gone as missing as the 16th member da red cabinet? The juicy it right there - jumps at ya faces? Time thinks proactive, not reactive to only what is being reported?

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Truism 5 months ago

Has barking at print become a sport in The Bahamas? If it has, perhaps we can have it replace cricket as our national sport.

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ThisIsOurs 5 months ago

It's a way to have a say. It's called "social media". It's common all over the world. Some mediums are annoying, depending on your preferences, if this one is an annoyance to you just find another. What's app chain messages drive me crazy.

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Well_mudda_take_sic 5 months ago

if Minnis can't even make the small fry thieves pay for their crimes, how in the hell is he gonna be able to do anything about the big wig thieves in the last government who stole mega-millions from the people?! Crooked Christie, Wicked Witch Maynard-Gibson, Shameless Shane, Bag Man Baltron Bethel, Woman Smacker Leslie Miller and so many others like them are literally laughing at all of us now!

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Truism 5 months ago

Barking at print refers to the inability to comprehend what you have read. Sorry!

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ThisIsOurs 5 months ago

Don't be sorry, just don't do it again

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TalRussell 5 months ago

Comrades! Crab Cakes is where to invest the state's and private investors millions of dollars. Crab Cakes can become our economic salvation.....And unlike thick oil sludge - Crabs are known be mother nature's first environmentalists.
If you go ask any Androsian - they will tell you how the evolution of Crabs first began on Andros Island.

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sheeprunner12 5 months ago

What was Dion Smith doing at BAIC anyway??????? ......... After Perry moved Arnold Forbes to MOW (to help cover up Davis dirt) ....... What were Dion's record of achievements???? ...... Sources purport that Dion was "borrowing" BAIC money for his election campaign ............... Watsayu???

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birdiestrachan 5 months ago

It is to bad the police has done this. with so much crime in the Bahamas why?

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licks2 5 months ago

Because a crime looks to have been committed. . .

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Truism 5 months ago

Dey looking for VAT too. LOL.

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BahamasForBahamians 5 months ago

Bad Start for the new administration.

The campaign is ran on the premise of transparency and retribution to all that have harmed that public purse, but the first arrest has no grounds for charges?

This leaves us to imagine that all following inquiries, audits, and arrests will have the same faith?

Is Minnis serious about transparency ? And its retroactive implementation?

Does that mean Renward Wells will also 'go to jail'? The man still stinks of the LOI matter. Reliable sources state he was comfortable paid to keep his mouth closed for Brave Davis.

Now that he has crossed the floor into a government in sunshine, is he not obliged to speak?

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BahamasForBahamians 5 months ago

Will the tribune hold the FNM to the same standard the PLP was held at?

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viewersmatters 5 months ago

What is so confusing is instead of being by his constituency office with his supporters waiting to hear the election results he decide to go in BAIC office which he wasn't supposed to have access to anymore because all seats and ministry posts were vacant at the time so why Mr. Smith was allowed access into Government building after hours? Why wasn't he at his constituency office amount his supporters like every other MP did or at their party head quarters, or even home why chose BAIC office of all other places? And they want cry about being victimized if your at a scene of a crime and your suspect of doing a crime it's the authorities job to conduct an investigation which they did and release all persons accused if they have a problem on how the investigation went file a lawsuit against the authorities let the court system deal with this matter.

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BahamasForBahamians 5 months ago

Is this an FNM controlled website ?

I've left several comments that are no within violation of the rules and they have not appeared? Is the tribune a onesided media platform ?

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sheeprunner12 5 months ago

Who are the "Bahamians" you speak about?????? ......... I trust that you do not mean a few neighbourhoods in New Providence

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MassExodus 5 months ago

BahamasforBahamians you are a new screenname likely the same person as realty_ours_mudda etc. You have a lot of time to create these additional screennames I see...

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ThisIsOurs 4 months, 4 weeks ago

I don't believe this "I went to watch the results at the BAIC office" cock and bull story. It sounds like one of those lawyer made up, it could have happened like that stories. Something isn't right

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BahamasForBahamians 4 months, 4 weeks ago

Well it is not what you believe, it is about what you can prove in court.

Considering BAIC's chair was released without charges the public can assume that either he was free of ill activities or FNMS were also complicit and as such charges were not brought.

The incoming AG's office should expect a write to be filed from the chairman's attorneys for the gestapo-styled arrest without charges.

Additionally, the media for its constant referring to Dion as the former-chair is also open to suit: his tenure is still active. Hubert has not rescinded. Not sure if Hubert is aware that this tenure is still active

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ThisIsOurs 4 months, 4 weeks ago

You are right. That's why he's free.

(But hold my belief that's its a made up story, like John Bostwick saying...well the maid passed by the bag, and there's also evidence of a rat hole in the room, maybe the rat dropped the bullets in the bag...rotfl)

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BMW 4 months, 4 weeks ago

Me neither, "brought his speaker and tv from home" munroe gotta be kidding! You know the scary thing is he expects people to believe that bullshit.

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Truism 4 months, 4 weeks ago

Dey probably had the VAT money stored in the TV and the speakers. Dat's why dey carry them. ROFL

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