Former PLP minister to sue over Nygard allegations

Former PLP minister to sue over Nygard allegations
Former Labour and National Insurance Minister, Shane Gibson.

NASSAU, BAHAMAS – Former Progressive Liberal Party Cabinet minister Shane Gibson said yesterday he plans to take legal action after being named and wrongly identified in an affidavit accusing Canadian fashion designer Peter Nygard of sex trafficking.

The federal class action lawsuit filed in a Manhattan Court on Thursday, details allegations of a decades-long sex-trafficking scheme that Nygard and his companies knowingly facilitated and benefitted from – and Bahamian officials were paid to ignore.

The class action complaint, obtained by Eyewitness News, claims Nygard bribed Bahamian police officers and further seeks to correlate the fashion designer’s financial contributions and engagement with the Progressive Liberal Party as evidence of his political influence.

It alleged Nygard provided PLP party members and corrupts police officers with “children and young women to engage in commercial sex acts with”.

The affidavit further that “Nygard regularly invited political figures, such as Bahamian Parliament members including, without limitation, Shane Gibson and police officers, to attend his “pamper parties.”

A photograph wrongly identifying Gibson at a “pamper party” in 2014 was also included in the affidavit.

When contacted by Eyewitness News, Gibson said he did not want to get into details at this time but simply stated that he believes the allegations relating to him are politically motivated.

PLP Leader Philip Brave Davis has called the allegations linking party members “mere scare tactics”, suggesting that the claims were perpetuated by Free National Movement (FNM) “surrogates”.

In a statement on Davis’ claims, the FNM accused the PLP of being defensive over the allegations.

“Has the PLP no shame?,” the statement asked.

Have they no decency? Where is the sympathy and empathy for the alleged victims of the Nygard sex trafficking ring?

“…To outright deny it and try to spin it into some political issue only shows the PLP lacks the moral courage and leadership to lead our country and stand up for our citizens. The PLP instead stands with an accused foreigner.

However, in a follow up statement, PLP Chairman Fred Mitchell called the comments “stupid as stupid could be and as dumb as flour cake”.

“From the start we have  made it clear that two things are at work in this badly written U.S. writ: first, the allegations of trafficking and secondly, abusive language about the PLP,” Mitchell said.

“We said nothing about the first save whoever has a right in law to sue: God bless them; go to it.

“As for the second issue, the FNM is trying to stick the two together. Clearly that is a phony logic.

“We say again this is all a political concoction  by a set of nasty, filthy, slimy, dirty minds in the FNM who now unfortunately  have hijacked the party of Ingraham and Whitfield.”

About Sloan Smith

Sloan Smith is a senior digital reporter at Eyewitness News, covering a diverse range of beats, from politics and crime to environment and human interest. In 2018, Sloan received a nomination for the “Leslie Higgs Feature Writer of The Year Award” from The Bahamas Press Club for her work with Eyewitness News.