Belize today suffered a major loss and setback in international litigation against the Ashcroft Alliance. Back in December, the United States’ acting Solicitor General, Ian Ger-sheng-orn advised the US Supreme Court to refuse to hear an appeal that the Government of Belize had ask to file so it would not have to pay out an original Belize sum of 38 million dollars to the Ashcroft Alliance, or failing that, have Belize assets in the United States seized. The award given by the District Court of Colombia and the Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit was granted in 2009 for the company Belize Social Development limited and in a second matter, for BCB Holdings, accrued interest now puts the figure roughly at 100 million Belize dollars.
Senior counsel Eamon Courtenay who has represented Ashcroft against the Government of Belize before told the media on December 16TH what he knew of this case although he is not a part of the current litigation team.
Eamon Courtenay, Senate Select Committee member
“What I am aware of is that the United States Supreme Court has been asked by the government to take up its appeal, the procedure in the United States is that you don’t go to the US Supreme Court as of right you have to get permission which is granted in very limited cases, in this particular case the government has asked permission and the Supreme Court took a decision that they want to hear from the government of the United States in particular the Solicitor General, the Solicitor General a couple weeks ago made his submissions in writing to the Supreme Court and in a very compelling and persuasive submission says there is absolutely no need for the Supreme Court to take up the appeal of the government in effect he is saying there is no merit in the argument and that the Supreme Court will refuse to give them permission to take the matter up in the Supreme Court.”
Lead attorney Benno Kimmelman, a partner with Sidley Austin LLP argued the case on behalf of BCB Holdings and Belize Social Development Limited. There can be no further appeals.