Astaphan threatens PM with defamation suit, while Browne warns him away from local politics and hints at counter-claim

Attorney-at-law Dwyer Astaphan, a former minister of national
security in St. Kitts and Nevis, has threatened to sue Prime Minister
Gaston Browne for alleged defamatory statements.

Reports say that Browne has already been served, as the legal
documents were delivered to him by Astaphan’s attorney. However,
Browne is warning the former politician of potential counter-claims.

Astaphan has been very critical of the Browne Administration,
speaking openly and, some say, honestly about a number of
issues, including the Antigua Airways debacle and the resulting
migrant-smuggling of the West Africans brough here.
But Browne has cautioned Astaphan, who does not reside in this
country, to stay out of Antigua and Barbuda’s politics.

He reportedly made the comment during his weekend radio
programme after Astaphan threatened to sue him for defamation.
In dismissing Astaphan’s claims, Browne insisted that his remarks
were not defamatory and he pledged to defend himself if the case
were to go to court. However, he also seemed confident that the
High Court would dismiss the matter as frivolous. 

Browne has counter-accused Astaphan of making serious allegations
against him leading up to the January 18 General Election, adding
that the Kittitian’s threat of a lawsuit could be financially motivated.