Mr. Keod Smith, one of the Attorneys of Mr. Peter Nygard contends that the allegations set out in Mr. Louis Bacon’s defamatory complaint in a New York Supreme Court

louis Mr. Keod Smith, one of the Attorneys of Mr. Peter Nygard contends that the allegations set out in Mr. Louis Bacon’s defamatory complaint in a New York Supreme Court, are completely without merit and nothing more than his latest maneuver in an attempt to pull off a coup d’état in The Bahamas by using the courts and the international press to smear Bahamian Prime Minister Perry Christie and his Progressive Liberal Party Administration with government corruption – because they are entertaining Mr. Peter Nygard’s application for the rebuilding his residence there that had been destroyed by a mysterious fire in 2009.

It is no secret that Mr. Nygard contends that Mr. Bacon, now referred to in The Bahamas as “The Ugly American”,
has been interested in obtaining Mr. Nygard’s property next door to his own estate in The Bahamas for a reported $100 Million. But Mr. Nygard has refused to sell.

From the records of the Bahamas land Registry, Mr. Bacon’s company, The Point House Corporation, paid a whopping $20 Million to buy the six pieces of property to the east of his residence totaling 3.5 acres. If he had been successful in buying Mr. Nygard’s world renowned mayan-theme mansion, he would have occupied and control the biggest estate at the most southwestern tip of the luxurious gated community called Lyford Cay.

Since around 2008-2009, Mr. Bacon had been attempting to establish a business presence in The Bahamas for his embattled New York based hedge fund, Moore Capital Fund LLC. Some of its former employees have since been hit with charges in the UK and USA of insider trading and manipulation of the commodities market. Those criminal infractions led to Mr. Bacon’s companies having to pay over $100 Million in fines and settlement to investors.

Just last November, the Wall Street Journal reported that Mr. Bacon, and his Hedge Fund, is the subject of a USA State Department criminal investigation in a “cross-border government probe into misconduct in the foreign-exchange market”.

A local aide of Mr. Nygard, Mr. Carlos Mackey, said that “the secretive Louis Bacon, does not like the fact that Mr. Nygard opened his mayan-themed mansion to the local people. So, Mr. Bacon organized the Lyford Cay Property Owners Association to join him in objecting to Mr. Nygard’s house being rebuilt.”.

“Mr. Bacon created a red herring by accusing Mr. Nygard of environmental damage supposedly brought on by Mr. Nygard maintaining his boat marina by excavating sand and debris from it in accordance with government issued permits for more than 2 decades. No evidence has been presented by Mr. Bacon to substantiate his claim. In fact, scientific evidence in a formal report shows that there is no environmental damages from Mr. Nygard’s maintenance excavation of his boat basin”, said Mr. Jeff Davis.

“What is amazing about Mr. Bacon’s allegation in his defamation case that Mr. Nygard caused environmental damage, is not only that it is not supported by evidence, but between the years of 2005-2006, Mr. Bacon excavated thousands of metric tons of land and dredged the sea-bed in order to construct a new boat basin built underneath his house, hidden for the public’s view. He had no permission from any government agency at all at the time. His request and granting of a permit, was given by former Prime Minister, Hubert Ingraham and his Free National Movement administration

which back-dated a license for Bacon’s illegal activity. This fact is now of record in the Bahamas Senate where the relevant Minister confessed to the back-dating”, says Mr. Smith.

Mr. Smith went on to say that “Mr. Bacon’s tactic to force Mr. Nygard out of Lyford Cay was bolstered when, in January 2013, he formed the single purpose Coalition to Protect Clifton Bay, a politically charged organization which is mis-described by him as an environmental organization. The objective was to pressure Prime Minister Christie to deny Mr. Nygard a permit to rebuild.”.

“After Mr. Bacon’s advances were rebuffed by Prime Minister Christie, in January 2013, Mr. Bacon unsuccessfully tried to entice Mr. Christie to side with him by inviting Mr. Christie to be his guest on an all-paid trip to New York where Mr. Bacon had been able to secure an award from the Audubon Society for his claim to have led a grassroot movement in The Bahamas to save slave ruins located a mile away from his house, across the Bay of Clifton. The Prime Minister rejected Mr. Bacon’s invitation”, said Mr. Smith.

“It was at the Audubon award ceremony that Mr. Bacon brought the bane of the Bahamian people upon himself when “…he insulted the Bahamian people by dishonestly taking credit for “saving” the sacred Bahamian land at Clifton Cay where countless Black slaves from Africa or the Carolinas in the USA lived, toiled, died and were buried”, said Vivian Whylly who claims to be a descendant of the slaves of the Whylly Plantation at Clifton.

“The fact that Mr. Bacon’s maternal great grandfather for whom his billion dollar Hedge Fund is named, was the leader of the Ku Klux Klan in his day, with his family being the owner of a slave (rice) plantation in North Carolina which he recently bought and restored to its antebellum state, made his comment in accepting the Audubon award for “leading” that grassroot movement to save Clifton, reprehensible in the eyes of Bahamians. He had the gall to declare in his acceptance speech, that his ‘holy book’ was the racist novel ‘Gone with the Wind’ which he says sums up what his personal philosophy was”, says Mr. Smith.

“From what I can see, the focus of the complaint being made by Mr. Bacon in his defamatory case in New York is to use the courts both in The Bahamas and in New York to cleanse himself of his self-inflicted wounds from his racist comments. He is now trying to stop the Bahamian people from talking about what he said and assessing his Ku Klux Klan heritage in an effort to understand his real basis for speaking such words. He is attempting to use his money might to abuse the processes of the Court to hide the fact that his family has been involved in racist crimes against Black people and to forcibly stop them from concluding that that is the real reason why he so comfortably made such disgusting comments in relation to the Bahamian people, more than 95% of which are Black.”, says Mr. Smith

Based on the New York Supreme Court documents, Mr. Bacon brings his defamation action asking for $50 Million in damages. From various defamation actions brought by him in The Bahamas, it appears that what he is alleging in the New York case, are subject of legal proceedings in The Bahamas already.

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Keod Smith - Keod Smith

Keod Smith is a Barrister in The Bahamas practicing at Commercial Law Advocates, Trinity Place Nassau.

He served as a Member of Parliament for 2002 – 2007 and as Ambassador for the Environment and Chairman of the BEST Commission from 2002 to mid 2006.

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