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Thursday 17 October 2019
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Look Loy’s legal battle against TTFA intensifies

FLASHBACK : In this March 20 file photo, Super League president Keith Look Loy,left, and his attorney Matthew Gayle,chat at the Hall of Justice, Port of Spain, after he scored a victory against the TT Football Association.
FLASHBACK : In this March 20 file photo, Super League president Keith Look Loy,left, and his attorney Matthew Gayle,chat at the Hall of Justice, Port of Spain, after he scored a victory against the TT Football Association.

SUPER League president Keith Look Loy's legal battle against the TT Football Association (TTFA), aimed at getting banking information from the local governing body and stopping it from impugning his status as a director, has intensified.

His latest claim came up for hearing at the Hall of Justice in Port of Spain on Wednesday before Justice Devindra Rampersad, who directed the TTFA to file its response by July 17, and transferred the matter to Justice Ronnie Boodoosingh, who in March ordered the association to hand over documents on the construction of its US$2.5 million Home for Football.

In his latest claim, Look Loy wants declarations that he and all directors of the TTFA are entitled to view, on demand, all and any documents in control or possession of the association, including bank records, investments and loans and other financials and that the refusal by the president and general secretary to allow them access was a breach of their duties.

Included in his claim, which is being argued by Dr Emir Crowne, Matthew Gayle and Crystal Paul, is an order to compel the TTFA to allow him to inspect and take copies of the financial information for November 2015 to present; returned paid cheque stubs for the same period; and all or any documents which are in the control of the association which are necessary for the discharge of his duties as a director.

In his affidavit in support of his claim, Look Loy said after Boodoosingh ordered the TTFA to hand over the documents relating to the Home of Football, he got some, while others were “still missing.” He said he reserved his right to file contempt and enforcement proceedings against the TTFA for failing to provide him with all the information the court ordered.

He said from the information he did receive, he noticed a number of discrepancies in the general ledger, including payments he knew ought to have been made not being included.

Look Loy said in order to verify the authenticity of the general ledger, he was advised by forensic accountants, he must get copies of all bank statements and paid cheque stubs.

“I also note from the documents I have received that the cumulative value of the contracts which have been disclosed to me appears to be approximately $3 million. The value of the stated FIFA investment is approximately $19.25 million; meaning there is an apparent unexplained discrepancy of approximately $16 million,” he said.

On April 3, he asked for bank statements but received no response from the TTFA, its president David-John Williams, its general secretary Camara David or its attorneys.

E-mails were sent and Look Loy said he even visited the TTFA’s office to get the information. On April 16, he was told he was not permitted access to the bank records because he was not a named signatory to the accounts.

Instead of giving him access to the banking information, Look Loy said David challenged his appointment as a director. He said he received a letter, on April 20 from David, telling him his appointment was “invalid and not consistent to the Constitution of the TTFA.”

Look Loy believes it was his insistence to get the information on the TTFA’s finances that led to the motion being tabled.

He immediately sought an emergency interim injunction and was successful in stopping the TTFA from challenging the legitimacy of his 2017 appointment to the board and ousting him from the football body. A meeting which was to be held on April 24 was cancelled after Justice Robin Mohammed granted the injunction.

The judge’s order also contained a penal notice warning the TTFA if it failed to comply with the terms of the order it would be in contempt and might be liable to jail time and its assets confiscated. The notice also warned any other person who knows of the order and does anything to help or permit the TTFA from breaching the terms of the order will also be held in contempt and may face jail time or have their assets seized

After Mohammed granted the injunction, Look Loy’s challenge was docketed to Rampersad, who transferred the case back to Boodoosingh.

“Clearly this is with a view to frustrating and/or preventing my accessing the bank statements and other documents with a view to increasing transparency and accountability within the sport,” he said in his affidavit in support of his judicial review claim.

Look Loy said David’s letter was ironic since in August 2017, David, as former league secretary to the Super League, wrote to the TTFA’s former general secretary telling him Look Loy had been duly elected to represent the league on the TTFA board.

Look Loy said he has taken part in board meetings and fulfilled his role as a director since March 2018.

He was elected by the Super League board to be its representative on the TTFA’s board on February 23, 2018. He was confirmed as a director of the TTFA on December 23, 2017, for four years.

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