A reader caught up with me the other day and asked,
“What is this Simmons’ call about? I’m confused.”
At this point I realized that most people don’t know what is going on, and those that do are not talking! Let’s get to it!
Stuart Heaslet - Peter Simmons Connection
This story begins with Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary in Christ Church, Barbados. Stuart Heaslet is a 54 year old engineer who was training Bajans to run the Sanctuary. He was also a participant in the Friends of Graeme Hall (FOGH), of which Peter Simmons, the former High Commissioner, was a spokesman. Heaslet had great respect for Peter Simmons.
Over time, Heaslet reports hearing several things that caused him grave concern. Eventually he wrote an affidavit (Court File No. 07-0141) reflecting these concerns.
Quotes from the Court document
Here, with my comments in parentheses, are some relevant quotes (please excuse any typos) to give you the gist of things:
- “His career as diplomat was exemplary while he was the High Commissioner for Barbados in London England. His connection to the existing government was solid, and with the fact that his brother David was formerly Attorney General of Barbados and a long serving elected official combined to make him a good spokesman for FOGH.” (Page 3 - 7 Heaslet appears to be saying that Sir David Simmons’ past political connections were helpful with regard to FOGH.)
- “I was invited by Peter Simmons to this house on March 14, 2007 to meet his brother Sir David Simmons. He had with him a copy of a document which I understood to be a lawsuit which named him. Throughout the course of the discussion Sir David expressed his displeasure at being included in the lawsuit and that he wished to be removed from it. He also let me know that the existence of the lawsuit could compromise the efforts of FOGH to see the creation of a National Park.” (Page 4 - 11 Since Heaslet represented that he had no knowledge of the lawsuit, this paragraph infers that Sir David intended his desire to be removed from the suit to be relayed to another party.)
- “In early August, 2007 Peter Simmons contacted me by telephone. We discussed matters related to the National Park project and then he advised me that John Knox was at risk because of his apparent cooperation with the plaintiff in this action. He told me that some of the defendants in the lawsuit were going to see to it that their contact, the president of the University of West Indies where Mr. Knox works, would terminate Mr. Knox’s employment as a result of this cooperation. I relayed these comments to Mr. McKenzie.” (Page 5 - 14 John Knox is a witness in the Canadian Action. He is a son of Marjorie Knox, and a brother to me. John no longer works for UWI, and up to the last time I checked, has not been paid for the last course that he taught in 2007! Bill McKenzie is the Canadian lawyer for the plaintiff, Nelson.)
- “On August 10, 2007 I spoke again with Peter Simmons by telephone. This time he repeated the comments about John Knox. and also added that certain defendants wished to make it known that Mr. McKenzie was in real danger and should “watch his back” because there were people in Barbados very angry with Mr. McKenzie. I asked him if it was his intention that these comments be conveyed to Mr. McKenzie and he said yes so I did
so.” (Page 5 - 15 I think this paragraph is self-explanatory.)
Who will report on this story? Will it be the Nation, the Advocate, the DLP, the BLP, BFP or BU?
Disclaimer: We wish to remind our readers that, while these are public court documents, the contents of these documents should be taken as unproven allegations pending the outcome of the case. What we state here is our opinion. On the other hand, we welcome and value comments. We would especially like to hear the opinions of those with knowledge of the case. Anonymous comments are most welcome.
See Stuart Heaslet’s Transcript from Court File No. 07-0141