BELIZE CITY, Wed. May 30, 2018– Mark King, former United Democratic Party Cabinet minister and former area representative for Lake Independence, was in the court of Supreme Court Justice Sonya Young on Monday in connection with a lawsuit that he brought against grassroots activist Moses Sulph.
King is suing Sulph for slander over a Facebook post on Sulph’s Facebook page concerning Brints Security, a company owned by King.
This is the first time that someone has been sued in Belize over a personal Facebook post.
Prior to their court appearance today, King’s attorney, Estevan Perrera, had written Sulph, demanding an apology. Sulph did not apologize. Instead, he lawyered-up with attorney Arthur Saldivar, and said he would defend his Facebook post in a full trial. Following the case management which took place on Monday, the court set two days in September, the 26th and 27th, to hear the case.
In a telephone interview today, Wednesday, Sulph told us that several of the employees of Brints Security with whom he had spoken and from whom he had received the information about the company, are willing to testify at his trial, and at least three of them have provided witness statements to be used in the case.
Sulph made the Facebook post on January 18, alleging that King’s company, Brints Security, was taking advantage of one of its employees with respect to Social Security contributions.
Following the post on Facebook, King’s attorney, Perrera, wrote Sulph, advising him that what he had published in his social media post was untrue.
In addition, Perrera asked Sulph to pay King’s legal fee of $3,000 and to compensate him $10,000 for injuries to his reputation. Sulph was supposed to pay by February 19; otherwise, King would proceed with a civil claim against him in Supreme Court.
Sulph did not pay, but instead responded with another Facebook post, saying, “Mr. Mark King, I will not be adhering to any of the demands sent in a letter by your lawyer. Tell your lawyer to provide me with the worker’s signed pay slips, and hours worked.”