High Court Judge, His Lordship Mr. Eddy D. Ventose has ordered St Kitts and Nevis’ Deputy Prime Minister Hon. Shawn K. Richards to pay former St Kitts-Nevis Labour Party (SKNLP) Senator Mr. Nigel Carty, EC$375,000 in damages for a 10-year-old character defamation case.
In his June 15, 2020 ruling, His Lordship Mr. Eddy Ventose awarded Mr. Carty, who was Minister of Education and Information in 2010, EC$50,000 for aggravated damages and EC$50,000 for exemplary damages. Deputy Prime Minister Richards at that time was sitting on the opposition benches.
In awarding Carty EC$275,000 in general damages, Justice Ventose noted noted it was to compensate him for “the wrong he has suffered and the damage to his reputation; to vindicate his good name; and for the distress, hurt and humiliation which the defamatory publication” Richards caused Carty.
Shawn Richards, who sat on the opposition benches at the time, openly accused Mr. Nigel Carty on January 13, 2010 at a public meeting of PAM held at Trafalgar Village, Basseterre, of sexually assaulting a young lady, claiming to have affidavits and a medical report to substantiate his accusation. He again continued to prolong this accusation at a PAM political public meeting held in Half Way Tree 3 days later on January 16, 2010. However, none of the evidence Mr. Richards claimed to have were presented in court.
The EC$375,000 is to be paid by Richards to Carty within 28 days of the June 15 ruling.The matter was first heard on April 15, 2019. A hearing for the assessment of damages was scheduled for November 28, 2019.
Mr. Carty was represented by Mrs. Angelina Gracy Sooko-Bobb of the law firm of Sylvester Anthony. Hon. Shawn Richards was represented by Mr. Terrance Byron and Miss Indira Butler.
The full judgement can be viewed here https://www.eccourts.org/nigel-carty-v-shawn-k-richards/?fbclid=IwAR1PkQzlM2t3V5mR0GHNDj-uuL0GW7mgCz6uNbA03PY-R4W365xdXvxm2z8