ST. GEORGE’S, Grenada: The Grenada government is depending on the co-operation of convicted fraudster, Eric Resteiner, to complete a bribery investigation into former Prime Minister, Dr. Keith Mitchell.
The administration of Prime Minister Tillman Thomas says officials have viewed a DVD that allegedly shows a money transaction between Mitchell and Reistener and it wants the former diplomat to release a copy of the evidence that is possessed by his attorney.
“The DPP (Director of Public Prosecutions) has indicated that a successful conclusion to this investigation depends largely on the co-operation of Mr. Resteiner,” a government statement said, referring to the probe into allegations that Mitchell accepted US$500,000 in 2001 in exchange for appointing Resteiner an ambassador.
However, Resteiner, who in 2007 began serving an 87-month prison term in Rhode Island, USA, for operating a US$47 million investment scam, is looking for favours in return for his co-operation.
“A copy would not be provided by Resteiner unless he received certain concessions from the United States government, a decision over which Grenada had no control,” the government statement said.
According to the release, Grenada’s Attorney General, Jimmy Bristol and Director of Public Prosecutions, Christopher Nelson, traveled to Boston in December 2008, where they viewed the DVD in the presence of an officer of the United States Department of Justice (USDOJ) and Resteiner’s attorney.
However, a precondition to viewing the DVD was agreeing to a confidentiality agreement to ensure the contents were not divulged or discussed.
“Subsequent to that viewing and as a result of information separately revealed to the attorney general by the USDOJ, the attorney general, on February 17, 2009, made a supplemental request to the USDOJ for further information which was received on March 16, 2009. This additional information has been passed to the DPP who continues to investigate the propriety of the conduct of former Prime Minister, Keith Mitchell,” the government statement added.
Mitchell has consistently denied any wrongdoing.