On behalf of the Minister of Public Health Social Development and Labor, Mr. V.H.C. de Weever, client, I request your urgent attention for the following.
I refer to the following media publications:
1. The Daily Herald in Sint Maarten on, Tuesday, September 30th, 2014: “According to VVD Member of the Second Chamber André Bosman, De Weever was “simply bought” by Heyliger”;
2. The Today Newspaper Sint Maarten, published on September 30th, 2014: POSTED: 09/30/14 10:55 PM: “According to VVD-MP André Bosman “Heyliger simply paid De Weever.”;
3. The Telegraaf, Netherlands, published on Monday, September 29th, 2014: “Volgens VVD-Kamerlid Bosman is De Weever ‘gewoon betaald’ door Heyliger.”
4. Amigoe, Curaçao, published on Tuesday, September 30th, 2014: “Volgens VVD-Kamerlid Bosman is De Weever ‘gewoon betaald’ door Heyliger”
To date you did not repudiate these statements that consequently appear to have indeed been made by you. If this is incorrect, please inform me accordingly. The remaining part of this letter is based on the likely premise that you indeed made referenced statements that by the way were quoted in exactly the same manner in at least four different newspapers.
The contentions that you made lack factual basis and are moreover slanderous and/or defamatory towards client. Your publications and/or public statements are untruthful, grievous and deliberately slanderous as per article 6:167 of the Sint Maarten Civil Code. Moreover, the verbiage used violates the honor and good reputation of client which constitutes slander as per our Penal Code.
The expressions furthermore violate the duty of care that must be safeguarded in respect to other persons in society. By expressing yourself in the manner described, you have moreover committed a tortuous act against client.
I furthermore note in this respect that your contentions do not serve any –general- interest. They intend to deliberately jeopardize the good name and reputation of client and because of this alone there cannot be any objective justification for the disputed actions caso quo publications.
Your unfounded and untruthful comments actually cause severe damage to the reputation of country Sint Maarten and consequently in a broader sense also reflect negatively on the Dutch Kingdom. Within the International Community credence might be unjustly given to your untruthful, defaming statements, made with seemingly no regard or concern for
the financial, economic and social ramifications for client and country Sint Maarten, and for latter’s position within the Dutch Kingdom.
Client has reasons to believe that you will continue to deliberately tarnish his good name and reputation by means of untruthful, grievous and deliberate slanderous expressions. The fact that to this date you did not make any effort to distant yourself from the disputed statement(s) or otherwise provide any evidence therefor, only further strengthens client in his belief.
By law you are obliged to verify the sources and accurateness of the contention(s) you make, even if you perceive this source to be correct. The thoroughness of that investigation must be proportionate to the severity of the accusations made. In the underlying case it is highly unlikely that you performed any investigation. Please note that by law you cannot hide behind alleged rumors or public statements which may have been made by others.
In light of the severity of the accusations made, your lack of –proper- investigation constitutes a violation of your duty to act diligently, which makes the statement(s) illegal. Your accusations were so severe that you were not entitled to make them, at least not without a thorough research and/or thoughtful reflection/consideration, concerning accurateness.
Client expresses the sincere hope that you will not attempt to hide behind your Parliamentary Immunity. Please note that a possible claim by you on Parliamentary Immunity would in any case not protect you from your civil and criminal liability in this matter, since you –also- made the disputed statements outside of Parliament. Invoking Parliamentary Immunity would instead reflect on your willingness to accept responsibility for the truthfulness of the statements that you made and as such reflect on your person and personality.
It would honor you, certainly in view of the manner in which you portray yourself as a straightforward, equitable and honorable person, to retract your incorrect and unsubstantiated statements out of your own volition. Moreover, since this would limit the damages suffered by client and country Sint Maarten to date.
You are hereby summoned to refrain from making any further factually incorrect, grievous and slanderous comment about client and notified that client reserves the right to start legal actions against you. Please also note that client holds you personally and severally responsible for the monetary equivalent of all damages he suffered and will suffer as a consequence of your illegal actions. You are hereby given notice of the legal interest on the monetary equivalent of client’s damages as of today.
Jairo G. Bloem
Attorney at Law