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Former ATL executives freed in fraud case

Tuesday, June 03, 2014 | 11:29 AM    

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KINGSTON, Jamaica-- The three former ATL executives in the closely-watched pension fraud trial were freed by the court today.

The accused were freed after Senior Corporate Area Magistrate Lorna Shelly-Williams upheld their no-case submissions, saying that the prosecution did not prove its case.

Patrick Lynch, the former chairman of the ATL Group Pension Scheme; Catherine Barber, the former general manager of the fund; and Dr Jeffery Pyne, former managing director of Gorstew Ltd, are believed to have conspired in the forging of four letters to deceive that consent was given for the distribution of $1.7 billion from pension fund surplus.

The prosecution maintains that the letters, which were presented to ATL Group Chairman Gordon 'Butch' Stewart by Barber on December 16, 2010 when he groused that consent was not given for the distribution, were backdated to 1998, 2002, 2005, and 2008. 

Pyne, who signed the letters, had left the company seven months before December 15, 2010 when the alleged forgery was discovered. The letters are alleged to have been created between the evening of December 15 and the morning of December 16, 2010.

Last month, attorneys for the defendants made their arguments for the magistrate to throw out the case, stating that the prosecution had not provided sufficient evidence to substantiate the allegations.

However, the prosecution countered that it had made out its case, and asked that Shelly-Williams call upon the three to answer the charges against them.

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