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Prominent Greek-born hotelier freed of revenue breaches

Saturday, September 14, 2019

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Prominent businessman and hotelier Dimitris Kosvogiannis was yesterday freed by the Kingston and St Andrew Parish Court of a charge of breaching the country's Revenue Act.

Prosecutors had sought an adjournment, but the judge responded positively to a submission by defence attorneys Peter Champagnie and Christopher Townsend that no evidence existed to support the charge.

In February, Kosvogiannis was freed in the same court after the prosecution offered no further evidence against him on two counts of obtaining money by false presence, and conceded that evidence of a breach of the law of the land was lacking and in fact non-existent.

“I have, from day one, denied wrongdoing and been clear that these charges were due to a malicious and devious attempt to sully my name,” Kosvogiannis stated.

“I hope no other individual in Jamaica, or anywhere in the world as a matter of fact, is visited by the injustice which was initially meted out to me. I am grateful that justice eventually has prevailed,” Kosvogiannis stated.

The former hotelier was accused of neglecting to provide information connected to applications for Taxpayer Registration Numbers (TRNs). In addition, he was alleged to have acquired several credit facilities from two financial institutions using different names and TRNs.

But Townsend had explained to the court that his client holds Greek and American citizenships and had received a TRN in the surname Cosvogiannis, after which he received another TRN in the name Kosvogiannis.

Townsend explained further that in his American passport Kosvogiannis's name is spelt Cosvogiannis, while in the Greek passport the surname is spelt Kosvogiannis, as there is no “C” in the Greek alphabet.

Yesterday, after the trial concluded, Kosvogiannis said that based on the nature of the charges which were levelled against him, he is contemplating instructing his attorneys to explore the possibility of pursuing a civil case, citing malicious prosecution.

A former general manager of the Melia Braco Hotel, Kosvogiannis said that he remains deeply committed to Jamaica and the many projects which he has embarked upon towards national development and the positive development of people, including society's most vulnerable.

Balford Henry


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