Hon. Andrew Fahie
Photo Credit: Gordon French/BVI Platinum News
Former Education Minister and First District Representative, Hon. Andrew Fahie said the case currently before the court involving National Bank of the Virgin Islands is far more in-depth than has been reported.
Hon. Fahie along with Petra Benjamin have filed a lawsuit against the National Bank of the Virgin Islands in relation to the August 15, 2007 robbery which occurred at the bank.
Hon. Fahie confirmed that due to this being a legal matter, it is not wise to comment in any significant manner, other than to assure that the facts surrounding the case are far more in-depth than what has been reported.
"In addition, at all times we must act accordingly to all citizens and avoid ignoring or obstructing the rights of all citizens whether we feel they are less fortunate or not. I will say nothing else and allow the courts to have their way uninterrupted," Hon. Fahie stated.
The First District Representative would not comment when asked about reports which suggest that he pursued the claim to add weight to the case against the bank.
Hon. Fahie's comments came after he took the stand at the opening of the case yesterday, October 8.
During the opening of the case, Hon. Fahie testified about sections of his witness statement to police, the injuries he suffered and about security at the bank.
There have been several pre-trial hearings on the matter leading up to the hearing.
According to the statement of claim filed in 2008, on August 15, 2007 the claimants were at the bank conducting various banking transactions when three masked men wielding guns entered the bank and began demanding money from the bank staff.
According to court documents, during the course of the robbery, the claimants were injured by a ricochet bullet fired from the gun of one of the robbers and as a result sustained injuries, loss and damages.
Both claimants have accused the bank of failing to take any or any reasonable care to ensure that they would be reasonably safe in visiting its premises to transact business.
Additionally, the claimants have accused the bank of failing to provide adequate security personnel on the premises, failing to provide adequately trained security personnel on the premises and failing to provide armed security personnel on the premises capable of dealing with a robbery and other criminal activities at the bank, particularly given the recent spate of robberies in the Territory.
Hon. Fahie and Benjamin are claiming general damages, interest at such rate and for such period as the court deems just, cost and other relief. Additionally, Hon. Fahie is claiming special damages in the sum of $5,080, while Benjamin is seeking special damages in the sum of $1,662.16.
As it relates to injuries, Hon. Fahie claimed to have suffered a fracture of the left lateral malleolus (outside bone of the ankle joint), difficulty in mobility, severe pain in left ankle, difficulty in sleeping because of nightmares relating to the incident and difficulty in perfroming daily tasks.
The former Minister cited that his medical expenses were in the sum of $5,086.
Benjamin claims to have suffered a fracture of one of the phalanx of the fourth toe, difficulty in mobility, difficulty sleeping because of nightmares relating to the incident, severe pain in the left foot and difficulty in performing daily tasks.
She claims particular damages for medical expenses in the sum of $962.16 and payment of housekeeper/babysitter for 10 days of $700.
The claimants are represented by Mr. Terrence B. Neale, while the bank is represented by Mr. Paul Webster, QC.