BVI News

Najan Christopher allegedly ignored AG’s advice, court told

Former Director of the International Affairs Secretariat, Najan Christopher.

Former Director of the International Affairs Secretariat, Najan Christopher, allegedly ignored advice from Attorney General Dawn Smith when she (Christopher) dispatched a diplomatic note to the embattle former premier, Andrew Fahie two years ago.

Christopher faced charges in Magistrate’s Court last week for sending the unauthorised note seeking diplomatic immunity for the then-Premier following his arrest in Miami on drug and money-laundering conspiracy charges.

Christopher has vehemently denied the allegations.

As reported by the BVI Beacon, Smith, who took the stand during the trial recently, had explicitly advised against any involvement in the matter, highlighting that Fahie was not eligible for diplomatic immunity due to the Virgin Islands’ non-sovereign status.

The trial commenced on May 21, and Christopher pleaded not guilty to Breach of Trust by a Public Officer and False Assumption of Authority. The proceedings, which lasted two days, took place in the newly opened court facilities within the former Clarence Thomas Limited building at Pasea Estate.

The heart of the prosecution’s case, led by Director of Public Prosecutions Tiffany Scatliffe-Esprit, focused on the diplomatic note printed on the Office of the Premier’s letterhead and stamped by the International Affairs Secretariat.

The note, which was dispatched to the United States Office of International Affairs merely five days after Fahie’s arrest, claimed that Fahie held immunity similar to that of a head of government, and requested his immediate release and return to the Virgin Islands.

This action sparked significant backlash locally, with then-Acting Premier Dr Natalio Wheatley and other government officials quickly distancing themselves from the note, labelling it as the work of a “rogue public officer.”

In contrast, Jamaica-based defence attorney Terrence Williams portrayed Christopher as a dedicated public officer caught in a whirlwind of events following Fahie’s unprecedented arrest. He emphasised her longstanding reputation as a hard worker with expertise in international affairs, suggesting that the charges against her were unfounded.

Testimonies revolved around the intricacies of diplomatic immunity, with various government officials, including Deputy Governor David Archer Jr, contributing their perspectives on the matter before the trial was adjourned to July.


Copyright 2024 BVI News, Media Expressions Limited. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or distributed.


Disclaimer: BVI News and its affiliated companies are not responsible for the content of comments posted or for anything arising out of use of the comments below or other interaction among the users.

  1. Resident says:

    She clearly didn’t have expertise in international affairs. A child would know Fahie didn’t have diplomatic status.
    You can work it out from Google.

    Then she ignored the AG’s advice. She was being wilful in her breach of her duties to the Crown.

    Like 53
    Dislike 3
  2. Why? says:

    Would the accused not follow the advice of the AG after Fahie’s arrest in Miami?

    During her whole life there are pictures of Queen Elizabeth in all the government buildings shouting to the observant that the BVI is a COLONY and we are her subjects.

    Like 18
    Dislike 6
    • @Why says:

      Because she’s an id**t! Now let Fahie pay her legal fees and the Government costs when she loses. Let him also ask them to release her when she’s convicted. Clearly, she was out of her league. If the AG who has command of the laws of the land advised to not do it, guess she knew better than the AG. Let her muu muu backside tek that.

      Met her once, and the way she conducted herself …. I would implore young people to heed the advice of the older folks. Put God first, lean not to your own understanding, treat everybody with respect, don’t run
      afoul of the law and make sure the person you are going to bat for will also do the same for you. Remember to stay in your lane. Blessings and love to all. My advice to her, next time do better,don’t be so fast to please people, its not how you start but how you finish, change your ways it will change your path and always place the Lord at the center of what you do. Pray, pray, pray. Please pivot and fond your Purpose. Good luck and God bless you!

  3. Biggest surprise says:

    The DPP actually appeared in Court herself!!! I thought she spent her days locked away in her office being important. I doubt that she will secure a conviction, but wonder whether she will get this matter beyond a submission of no case to answer at the end of the prosecution case.

    Like 11
    Dislike 4
    • Alma says:

      @Biggest Surprise;

      You seem to have something against the DPP. What you’re not considering is that Ms. Christopher is before the court because of her action. The DPP is handling the matter based on the evidence before the court. You need to do like everyone else and allow the court and the defendant due process.

      You are speculating that the DPP won’t get a conviction in this case? Who knows? The case is not finished as yet. You should be hoping that justice is served when that time comes, regardless of whether the defendant is found guilty or not guilty.

      Like 7
      Dislike 4
  4. She Rong says:

    Fire she respect for her female boss lady Dawn Smith. No common sense to accept and understand that BVI is only a territory and is not Sovereign and no Soveregn Rights.

    Like 26
    Dislike 6
    • Alex Hamilton says:

      No matter that Fahie instructed her to write a”Set
      Me Free”note to the USA authorities AG Dawn Smith as legal head said “No can Do” and gave sound legal and common sense reason why and which Christopher ignored.

      Common sense ruled in addition to legal advice from BVI head lawyer AG Dawn Smith.

      Mekkin BVI lookin double chupiddy in addition to the historic shame.

  5. Wellsah... says:

    The entitlement in these Virgin Islands is real. When you do wrong for so long it start to seem right, specially if it transcends generations. But like the Bible say, a time for everything. A time to plant and a time to pluck up that which had been planted.

    Like 18
    Dislike 4
  6. @Wellsah says:

    When a Jamaican, St. Lucian, etc. gets all rights and privileges in the country which they were born is that their God given rights or entitlement? Is it only in the Virgin Islands a Virgin Islander is not entitled to the rights and privileges of their own country?

    Like 7
    Dislike 9
    • Wellsah says:

      @@wellsah, I don’t live in Jamaica, St Lucia etc. Now do I? Why focus on others I want where I at to be fixed let’s Jamaican residents worry bout Jamaica. Cha man!

      Like 2
      Dislike 3
  7. BuzzBvi says:

    Seems a lot of people placed in high positions do not know the history or the current status of the VI. So sad our top peoole are so ignorant. Something the premier struggles with daily.

    Like 15
    Dislike 2
  8. Advice says:

    Last time I checked, advice is just that. It is up to the recipient to take it or not. Advice is not law. Not following advice is not a breach of the law. Advice is different from strict instructions. What was the substance of the advice if the AG was and still is no expert to give such advice? Who asked Najan to write the letter? Did not someone instruct Najan to proceed? If it was the former Premier, is it wrong for a Premier to go against the advice of the AG if the AG’s role was only one of basic advice in an area she had and has no expertise in? So because Najan followed the instructions of her boss, which the AG is NOT, this had to end up in court, to waste taxpayer’s money? So what was the major crime committef here that could not be handled internally? The court should have been the very last resort, if a resort at all. Where was the breach of trust if Najan was simply following the instructions of her employer, who is NOT the AG? Where is the breach of trust if her employer is the one who was wrong about his own diplomatic status? So this is all about hurt feelings because the AG’s alleged advice (in an area she is not an expert in mind you) was not followed? Close this stupid case, sort it out internally and find meaningful work to do!

    Like 13
    Dislike 10
    • Dear says:

      Sir or Madam, you were going good until you reached the part about employer. None of the persons you mentioned was her employer. Don’t you know who is head of the Public Service?

      • Advice says:

        @Dear, point is accepted. You are right. I can see that she was the Director of the International Affairs Secretariat. It was her job to decide how to proceed on an international matter. She consulted with the AG allegedly as any prudent director would and the AG claims she gave an advice. What was the content of this advice if the AG is no expert so clearly was not sure. What makes them think Najan received the advice if she says she did not. Could have been an email sent that was not read. Even if advice was received, it is only that…ADVICE. Not law. So not following the advice from a non expert is not a crime and is not a breach of trust. In fact, the crime would be to follow the advice of someone who is NOT an expert on the topic and this is what the AG stated that she is…NOT AN EXPERT. This is nonsense. Why not charge the AG for breach of trust for giving advice in areas she is not an expert in. The matter is too trivial and is a waste of the court’s time and resources.

        Like 4
        Dislike 2
      • Advice says:

        Also, @Dear, technically, the former Premier was Najan’s boss because the International Affairs Secretariat falls under his office. He would have been her direct report. This could be why she wrote or signed the letter in the first place. He was the one who instructed her and she was only doing as she was told. So who will you listen to. Your Boss giving a direct instruction or an AG giving an advice (in a area she not sure about herself). Whatever the case, it is a ridiculous matter and the court should send the Parties away from wasting its time.

        Like 3
        Dislike 3
    • @Advice says:

      1 you sound emotional.

      2 your argument is she should be immune because the boss said so? So if he told her to go out and kill someone are you saying she shouldn’t be guilty? If he asked for something sexual I bet the common sense would be there to refuse.

      Like 5
      Dislike 2
      • To @advice says:

        Emotional? What an assinine comment followed by an assinine question. What is emotional is charging one in a whole court of law just because they did not listen to another’s unqualified advice. Charged with breach of trust? What trust was breached if the AG has admitted that there was no clear direction, not a single policy or no expert advice at all to properly guide anyone on the matter. Then, how can an AG advise in areas she is not an expert in. There is a policy that prohibits lawyers from doing do. Same applies to a doctor. Is the real breach of trust on the AG’s part?

  9. See! says:

    This makes me remember what the Premier said in the HOA last week. Some sit in offices and do not involve those who are in leadership, or the feel entitled to do as they please. This needs to stop! It put the territory in a state of confusion, especially when things happen and the leaders don’t know how to respond because those who had to bring it to their attention didn’t and took upon themselves and made decisions. I pray the right decision is made in this one. smh, sad!

    Like 2
    Dislike 3
  10. There says:

    are entitlement notions and wrong doing in every country and continent under the sun.

    Some how, the BVI, due ignorance, hatred and personal entitlement is the scape goat for eveything entitled, wrong and bad.

    For God sake, give it a break. No country is immune to imperfection, and neither is any human being.

    Like 9
    Dislike 1
  11. Malcom x says:

    God will let you go. The D** goes to the same church together and she trying to put dis girl in jail . The DPP have a island man for a husband and she not happy no man from here want her

    Like 1
    Dislike 11
  12. Warrant Dismissal. says:

    She should be dismissed from the service, the court is no place to settle this. 6

    Like 4
    Dislike 2
  13. @ MALCOLM. X says:

    Is this another one of your new name for 2024 ? I should of put malgorne AZz / try and get familiar with – what is an island ? & a half breed wannabe tolian like yourself . ( I’ll answer the last QUESTION for you , both parents are not from here . LU can do your research on the first QUESTION for yourself-

    • To @ Malcom x says:

      Malcom x I Born my great grandfather and mom from Tortola we are the ones from Tortola we don’t like island man so if you from down the island now u know how I feel

    • To @ Malcom x says:

      Malcom x I Born my great grandfather and mom from Tortola we are the ones from Tortola we don’t like island man so if you from down the island now u know how I feel I’m very sure you is her husband u feel it that why you reply

  14. Well guuurl says:

    You took it upon your shoulders to write letter to the USA of America on behalf of the fat suckling criminal Andrew after he got clipped by the Feds in the USA. Guuuurl, you better hope the USA don’t drop charges on you for trying to interfere. What you all don’t seem to understand is the USA is not to be played with. The hell girl, the USA laws is not slow and backwards like this little tiny third world volcano rock in the middle of the ocean called Tortola.

    Like 8
    Dislike 4
  15. Latitude says:

    Someone had to instruct her to write that letter and told her what the contents should have been. Common sense is that it had to be Andrew himself or his lawyer acting on his behalf.

    So, being in the position she (Najan) was at the time, didn’t she know that her boss didn’t have immunity? She ought to have known. Next question is the reason that she was asked to write the letter. Was she aware that the then Premier of the Virgin Islands was being held by the U.S on such serious charges? Did she think that by writing that letter, he would have been released and no one here in the Virgin Islands would have been the wiser? Najan knows exactly what happened, how it happened and why it happened.

    All this back and forth about the AG only giving advice, it’s not law, Najan can accept the advice or not, the AG was not het boss, the matter could have been handled internally etc are neither here nor there as far as I’m concerned. One only has to look at the seriousness of why this letter was asked to be written in the first place and whether Najan knew as she was writing it, that the information was incorrect. If she wrote it knowing fully well that her boss didn’t have immunity, then the charge against her is well founded in my opinion. Many people covered up many things for Andrew for many years. But now we see that all good things must come to an end.

  16. Holes says:

    There is latitude and there is longitude.

    1. She wrote the letter (what if she only signed)
    2.She ought to gave known her BOSS did not have immunity (what if she did not know just like many people did not know if you are being honest. If she knew, why was the AG needed for advice or any other purpose?)
    3. Najan knows how, why, what (based on what facts?)
    4. She shoukd be charged if she wrote it knowing her Boss did not have immunity (SHE DID NOT KNOW that is why the charge is NOT fraud. It is breach of trust for not following the AGs advice. That is why the AGs advice is subject to scrutiny. Is it a crime not to follow one’s unqualified advice? Did she receive the advice prior to signing the letter SHE SAYS SHE DID NOT. Can the prosecution prove otherwise.)

    Summary – the elements of any Breach of Trust has not been proven by the prosecution. No case to answer. Stop assuming and read the facts!

  17. Cheeky Monkey says:

    It is clear that the AG and the DG wants Najan to walk free because she’s one of we and the great Delores Christopher’s daughter. However, I’m afraid to let you know that the law does not work that way. Najan is a smart girl. She was deliberate in her action and she knew what she was doing. Some people get off their crime because of technicality and even if Najan gets off, the judge should give her a stern warning about her conduct. There’s a thin line between love and hate and so there’s a thin line between doing good and doing bad. Cheeky Najan you are wrong as daylight. Nobody right in their mind could let me act alone and write such an auspicious letter for a public officer arrested on US soil. Najan’s crime requires community hours and a ban from the public service. That’s all and nothing less. Now come to think about this idiot Andrew waiting to hear his faith, it just shows the level of respect some people had for him and he messed it up. So many people looked up to that fool and look at him now. I am so mad about this whole nonsense.

  18. Snub UNCLE SAM says:

    And end up using the weakest currency and no goods and services from the USA.

Leave a Comment