-raises alleged links to misappropriation, suspicious election campaign contributions
BUSINESSMAN Anand Sanasie has come forward to challenge the credibility of discrimination claims made by the APNU+AFC delegation during their visit to Washington DC, last month.
Sanasie, in a letter to this newspaper revealed a complex web of financial dealings and allegations of misappropriation involving fellow businessman Dorwain Bess. The letter stems from an article published by APNU-aligned Village Voice News outlet under the headline, “Washington Conference Hears of Discrimination in Guyana, Businessman Dorian Bess story highlighted.”
In his letter, Sanasie sheds light on his involvement with Bess, beginning in 2014, when Roysdale Forde, S.C., introduced them to a business venture related to the importation of diesel fuel.
Sanasie’s investment was intended to help Bess, who possessed a licence but lacked the necessary funds. Sanasie, in his letter, revealed that the demise of the company which would later become SBF Petroleum Inc. was not politically motivated but rather was driven by greed.
Sanasie alleges that in his absence, resolutions were passed to bypass bank instructions designed to protect his investment, leading to frozen and cancelled accounts.
Sanasie also disclosed that SBF International Inc., linked to Bess, made financial contributions to the APNU+AFC election campaign in 2020, presumably in exchange for favours such as the lease of land to establish a fuel farm in Linden.
The lease was issued by NICIL but was granted to a company established by Bess named Alpha Petroleum Inc., with Dorwain Bess and his child’s mother, a junior lawyer, working with Roysdale Forde, serving as directors.
Moreover, the letter delves into allegations of misappropriation by Dorwain Bess in previous business dealings, which also resulted in legal disputes
“It was during this period that I started to look into Bess’s background and past dealings. I found out that Bess misappropriated funds from another business dealing prior to my involvement; that matter also ended up in the court,” Sanasie said in his letter.
The letter suggests that the APNU+AFC delegation’s claims of discrimination may be rooted in incomplete or misleading information.
Sanasie implied that at least one member of the delegation is aware of Dorwain Bess’s history and ongoing legal battles.
“It is quite apparent that the APNU+AFC delegation that went to Washington DC was ill-prepared and sought to use frivolous examples of racial discrimination, as I am aware that at least one member of that delegation is very well aware of Dorwain Bess’s shenanigans, his questionable past and present court battles,” Sanasie said.
To corroborate his claims, Sanasie cited the April 2022 court ruling, which he said exposed Bess’s alleged attempts to evade the judgement, including false claims of selling an oil tanker, fraudulent documents, and questionable transactions.
Sanasie raised questions about the credibility of discrimination claims made by the APNU+AFC delegation during their visit to Washington, DC, suggesting that these issues may be rooted in business disputes rather than racial discrimination.
The court ruling, issued by Justice Navindra Singh, said that the judgement creditor had been awarded significant sums of money in three separate High Court actions in January, 2021. The ruling highlights that the Respondent, Bess, had appealed the judgments, which were subsequently dismissed on June 29, 2021.
Justice Singh’s ruling extensively examined the alleged actions of Bess in an attempt to evade the judgement.
It notes that Bess falsely claimed that he sold an oil tanker, Jubilee X Bornova, to Milton Bradford, producing a fraudulent Memorandum of Agreement to support this claim.
The court found these documents unreliable and cast doubts on their authenticity.
Furthermore, the court revealed that the vessel’s transfer, as evidenced by the certificate of Guyanese registration, occurred 32 days after the judgement was granted to the judgement creditor, raising suspicions of an attempt to evade payment.
It was determined that SBF International Inc. had the means to satisfy the judgments but had not done so.
In addition to the vessel in question, the court ruling also mentioned another vessel, Esparanza Real XMV Winchester, registered to SBF International Inc. The whereabouts of this vessel were unclear, and its registration was also linked to Bess.
The court found that SBF International Inc. possessed a valuable asset, the vessel, and thus had the means to fulfil the judgments.
Bess is currently before the local courts charged with two counts of conspiracy to defraud.
Both incidents are in relation to the alleged plot by two reporters to extort money from businessman Afras Mohamed, in order to remove an offensive post that was published by Guyana News Network (GNN), an online entity.
He was charged alongside APNU+AFC activist and US-based social media commentator Rickford Burke, who has also been linked to an alleged extortion plot which has led to two former reporters being charged.
Burke is wanted by the police for “questioning in relation to conspiracy to commit a felony, to wit, publication of defamatory libel in order to extort money.”