The National Crime Agency (NCA) in the UK did not pick up Antigua and Barbuda’s M.P Asot Michael for a routine interview as he suggested in a press statement Tuesday.
According to a document by the Head of Caribbean, Central America & Mexico Department, Patrick Reilly, the NCA arrested Michael on the morning of October 23.
The UK official wrote that Michael was questioned about bribes that a UK national allegedly paid for business contracts in the Caribbean.
At the time of his arrest, Michael was the Minister of Tourism, Economic development, investment and energy, but was stripped of the portfolios later that day on the order of prime minister Gaston Browne.
Reilly’s letter to Antigua and Barbuda’s government officials, says Michael was released pending further investigations. No conditions were imposed on his travel in, around or out of the UK.
According to the notification to the government, the NCA says it cannot rule out the possibility of criminal charges.
When contacted this morning, attorney general, Steadroy “Cutie” Benjamin said he was not aware of the document and therefore could not comment.
Efforts to reach Prime Minister Gaston Browne were unsuccessful. He’s said to be travelling back to Antigua from Jordan.
Chronicles of Monte Friesner - Financial Crime Analyst
Contributed by Antigua Observer