Agent for Lambirds Academy raises more concerns

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Agent for Lambirds Academy raises more concerns
A group of the foreign students.
A group of the foreign students.

An agent for Lambirds Academy which is behind a major scam in St Lucia has expressed his disappointment with the way the matter is being handled by the Saint Lucian government.

Managing Director of Excellent Int’l Educational Institute of Nepal, Pavel Kumar Shah, has said that his agency is “totally confused about what the government wants.”

Shah said that while some of the victims are being housed at several places, some of them are even starving.

“Some are eating and some are starving. Sometimes food is provided and other times not…government says they will support the students and other times they ask the students to leave,” he explained.

Shah argued the students should be provided with jobs to earn an income, so as to take care of their needs. He said this is important because they stayed should not be returned until the case is finalized.

“As all knows, this is the case should be decide quickly. The government must play the role of parents of students, but I think they are treating our students as step relation,” he said.

But that isn’t all; Shah accused the government of ignoring the students whenever they raise concerns.

“We appeal to all of the related and non-related organizations and the local people to help raise the concerns of our students, so that a quick decision is made,” he further stated.

The agent said he and his colleagues in Nepal have written the International Court of Justice and is now awaiting a response, to determine whether they can pursue legal action against Saint Lucia.

A group of the foreign students told St. Lucia News Online (SNO) recently that groceries provided by the government last only week – equivalent to one meal per day.

The foreigners said Saint Lucians have been donating to the centre, which affords them at least three meals per day. Alternatively, the group has to purchase food with their own money, which is running low.

Four men arrested and charged in connection with the Lambirds Academy scandal were denied bail when they appeared in a Castries Magistrate’s Court on Friday, April 10.

This is the second time Iftekhar Ahmed Shams, Koushal Kumar Batukbhai Chadasama, Ashwin Kanji Patel and Gurjeet Singh Vilkhu were being denied bail.

The men are now represented by Marcus Foster. Leslie Mondesir was their previous attorney. The next court hearing is April 24.

All four are charged with human trafficking in connection with an alleged internet scam at Lambirds Academy that left a group of some 70 foreigners – mainly from Nepal and The Phillipines – stranded in St. Lucia.

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44 COMMENTS

  1. This whole issue does not seems to be Human trafficking. This case clearly seems to be of unhappy and complaining asian students for the Tution fees and accommodation they paid for the study course and need a refund as soon as possible. Give them their whatever refunds from the lambirds freezed accounts by the St Lucian govt, make them satisfied and send them back to their lands. They all have their return Airtickets for the journeys with them as its the thumb rule of St Lucia immigration to travel in the country.

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  2. WHY IS THIS SUCH A LONG DRAWN DRAMATIC PROCESS- PEOPLE GET SCAMM ALL THE TIME ALL OVER THE WORLD-
    ST. LUCIAN GOVERNMENT SHOULD FREEZE AND SELL ANY ASSET THESE SCAM ARTISTS HAVE- GIVE THE MONEY TO THESE FOREIGNERS AND SEND BACK TO THEIR COUNTRY- AS FAR AS THE JAIL BIRDS- DEPORT THEIR ASS BACK TO THEIR COUNTRY- WHY IS ST LUCIA FEEDING THEM IN JAIL-
    THAT'S BULL CRAP! SO ST LUCIA IS SPENDING MONEY TO ALL THESE FOREIGNERS,WHEN THEIR OWN PEOPLE ARE STARVING- MAKES NO SENSE- WHERE IS KENNY IN ALL THAT? STEP UP pm !

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  3. I am trying to understand why the St. Lucia government is being ask to be responsible for the students. Howm or what organization was paid by them. Can someone please let me know without it being political. Thank you.

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  4. All of u guys are either stupid or stupid. The students came down with the expectation of getting a job whiles they study in st Lucia. This was part of the package given to them. So if I am going to study in Cuba and part of the pkg is that I will be given a job of course I will bring money with men but eventually it will run out if I don't get the job that I was promise. St lucians and all the comments in here u guys a stupid.never went to good school . u stupid Lucian's need to travel more get out and see the world u ppl to close minded. I wish I could have change my nationality but I can't cause am ashame to be a st Lucian. I would prefer to be Cuban. Dumb Lucian's

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  5. Duhhhhh....If the Government did not want to accept liability for the students then It should not have charged the accused with human trafficking, stupid. Stop making excuses for an incompetent Minister for National secuity and and incompetent government. Thats what we pay them for. In addition it is useless for us to assume that the Minister did not know of the law since in his proffesseion there is no such thing. Every attorney is taken to be learned. For if it were a Timothy Poleon they would know exactly what to do and how.

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  6. As usual most of you on this post are talking crap from an uninformed position.

    The Counter-Trafficking Act 2010 24 (1)states:
    The Minister in conjunction with the relevant Ministries shall develop a plan .... for the provision of appropriate sevices.... for victims of trafficking and dependant children of victims including;

    2. a)appropriate housing, taking into account the person's position as a victim of crime, including safe conditions for sleeping, food and personal hygiene;
    b) physcological counselling;
    c) medical assistance;
    e) employment, educational and trainning opportunities; and
    f) legal assitance

    3. Vitims may be eligible for employment
    4. Victims and children entitled to recieve social benefits.

    In addition St. Lucia is a signatory to the UN 2000 Trafficking in Persons (TIP) protocol. This spells repercussions for St. Lucia not complying with the regulations. This is the reason that it enacted the above legislation in the first place.

    It is referenced that the majority of St. Lucians are tacitly and actively a bunch of law breakers, as proffered in a number of reports on crime that we have paid with our own money. There we have a law and we ignore its provision. What if a man totally ignores the criminal code?

    No wonder we have a number of people here encouraging our leaders to break the law. Without even giving one thought to the repercussions, then these same people will be quick to call Mary Francis and others all kinds of names like they were the ones responsible for our predicament. Just like the US the UN doesn't play.

    Some people say that how comes these people came here to study and can't take care of themselves? Or how other countries are not helping? For your information laws do not work in isolation, this is why we have Customs, Imigration, Authorising Ministries to act as a saftey net for protection of the country from such outside threats. With all these public bereaucracies in place we have failed to identify these potential threats to our shores, whether through ignorance or deliberate in our quest for finacial or political gains. Do we now demand other countries to take us out of a predicament that through all assumptions we into ourselves and were equipped to handle all matters arising from it.

    Whats gonna happen with say if we have a Citizens by Investemnts Program? Or even when we become our own Privil Council? This are the facts. WE keep blaming and blaming but we refuse to insist on good governance. All what the authorities are doing is avoiding their jobs. If you knew that you could not afford the repercussions the you shold have done a better job at avoidining the business or conducting due diligence. There is much suspicion under which the owners of the isnsitution were granted the necessay permissions in the first place. What are we going to do now? do we allow the government to investigate itself as have happened in the past? Taking eveything into context and their implict silence on the matter for several weeks?

    It is like a curse to be uninformed and misinformed just speak utter garbage. St. LUCIA, FOR THE LAST TIME DO WHATS RIGHT!!!

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  7. We seem to forget that the government must accept partial responsibility for allowing the scam to be partially legitimized. We cannot say for certain what is being or not being said or done but I would think that this trial needs to be handled as speedily as possible. As for jobs..........

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  8. The lambird agent is correct in their approach in seeking justice for the students. It could have been 70 lucians responding to a school placement here. What happened to the students is unjust and they should be adequately compensated or refunded simple. They have receipts they paid for service that was no delivered come on!

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  9. I also apply fr st.Lucia from India. I dont know how can get my registration back. I send many mails to academy but reply. Guide me. Thanks

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  10. I think that government and people of Saint Lucia put with way too much nonsense.
    These people could have probably been wronged and tricked ... who knows and then again they could all be lying and been made aware of the situation before hand .
    Now they want to sue Saint Lucia. Now they want our government to provide employment for non nationals .
    We have absolutely no idea what these individuals are capable of . Why wasn't a more thorough , and detailed check into their backgrounds made before allowing them into enter Saint.Lucia?
    Once again this shows how naive a government we have in power ..how easily they are undermined .
    If this had been Saint lucians in their country in the exact same situation they're facing ... your answer would have been automatic deportation from their country .
    We need to show other countries that we will not stand for being treated like shit when we're in their country and when they come here without proper documentation that we are just gonna say yes and accept them..same rules should apply for all . No documents ..bye bye , been tricked by your own people ...really sad ...but again ,, bye bye send them back home .

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  11. I have never heard of anyone named Shah who has a good aura about him. This lambirds guy is proving the point. These students are his responsibility. He is the one who should be ensuring the students well being until they finish school. The government owe thses students precious little far less jobs and food. They came the attend school and if there is no school to attend then they go back home and sue lambirds if they want. How could students who were the guest of a private concern all of sudden becomes the responsibility of the state ? The quicker those guys are made to leave the better it will be for st Lucia. We need our jobs for our children leaving school and our money to fund our hospitals and police. Our meagre resources are not to squander on the hundisciplined actions of some unsavoury characters.

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  12. The government approved their paper. Leading them to think the was legitimate. They are part of the reason why they lost their money.

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  13. SEND all of them to PRISON. They will get three meals a day. Then you will see how fast they buy their tickets back to they country.

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  14. There are so many possibilities. It is 2015 after all!

    What if the students never intended to study here? What if they knew that whatever was being done to get them to the USA was illegal but took the risk out of sheer desperation, only to be scammed into losing all their monies?

    What if the students are actually in on the scam to extort millions from the government and people of Saint Lucia because they found out how ridiculous and gullible we are. (By reading the comments on sno and elsewhere on social media). They must have figured: "piece of cake, and besides, we are foreigners, they always show more sympathy to foreigners".

    What if the four arrested persons are simple scapegoats? What if:

    A) It is all staged so that the real con artists get off free? Do these men even speak English? Has anyone heard them utter a word? Hmmm....

    B) They are in on a deal with some local politicians so they get paid for their jail time until this is all forgotten.

    The students are NOT victims of human trafficking but rather, victims of a money scam?

    The students are indeed victims of human trafficking and have actually been spared much worse, such as sex work, forced labour, drug mules, etc...
    But then why aren't they just eager to return home seeing that it could have been much worse?

    You see people, the world is not black and grey. We must force ourselves to think before we leap, or type. We have absolutely no idea what is going on or why/how these students found themselves here. Let's stop with the assumptions.

    I'm just waiting patiently to see how all of this unfolds. I really am clueless and baffled, to be honest. What is really going on?

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  15. Now saint lucians, it is quite obvious that we have been left in the dark, grappling for answers. I would not go as far as assuming anything as we know very little about what we are offering opinions and suggestions about. Who deemed this as a case of "human trafficking"? This in itself is a conclusion. Is that what they are being tried for as opposed to extortion? Or has the public simply assumed that this is what this case is about? If these men are indeed being tried for human trafficking, what exactly were the students trafficked for? And how were they coerced? If the decision to come here was indeed their decision, this already poses a problem. More so if there is no proof that they were brought here for reasons other than to pursue studies. These lawyers, if they play their cards right, may not have much work to do. Now, our government, for leaving its people in the dark, our police force, from whom an official statement is yet to emerge are taking the flack.

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  16. If these students want to work in st Lucia I suggest the government give them a bucket, a stick and a cutlass and make them cut the grass on the side of the streets. Exchange work for food.

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  17. If you say you go and study in a country you should have money for daily expenses. So now how comes they starving? They were suppose to spend about 6 months training, so if the school was in operation they would be starving too I guess

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  18. First off they were not scammed by lucians I can't even pronounce them ppl names smh put their ass on a play n send them to their country ppl get scammed all over the world its a billion dollar industry

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  19. Honestly, I have never been more annoyed at reading a news article such as this one. The government does not have to provide anything for students who ended up here due to a private entity. The government should try to encourage a speedy court procedure in order to charge the four persons arrested to reimburse the students but during this procedure I firmly believe that these persons should return to their country. Our country is not able to afford for these students and award them with any job whereas our own are unable to obtain employment. As far as I am concerned our St. Lucia has no money to give to no students and just for their information, the only think I believe our country is responsible for righy now is to investigate on how this institution was established here. This should also be a learning opportunity for us, in that, when we have institutions who want to establish themselves in our country, an investigation should be done prior to their establishment. I will agree with the fellow respondents on this issue by stating please allow these persons to return to their country immediately and quickly because we are unable to provide for them financially when we are in debt of millions to the world bank.

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    • It is agreed that they, the stranded should be treated fairly, as persons left stranded anywhere should. But that does NOT extend to an ENTITLEMENT to work here, although it might be permitted on humanitarian grounds.

      Clearly, if you are traveling so far away from home to school, the government where you are schooling should not be held hostage to your discomforts with your private services provider. This bears repetition.

      I fail to see how this can be held up in a court of law.

      These students did not agree the purchase of services from the GOSL.

      Although local authorities should have investigated thoroughly, the principals behind the establishment of the school here, to ensure that there are contingency funds and insurance (required by legislation) for situations such as these, the government is not responsible for the room and board of those people while they are on island.

      In purchasing services, or anything for that matter, the guide is "Let the buyer beware".

      The entire situation reveals the state of Saint Lucia's unpreparedness for foreign direct investment (FDI) and globalization.

      Unfortunately, our PM and the political directorate betray the perspective and knowledge, that FDI is simplistically just populating the ribbon of lands on our coastlines with hotels. The implication for cheap labour and not wealth creation of locals is almost ALWAYS the too obvious short-term re-election goal here.

      How sad! The SLP's hierarchy and its followers cannot see the forest for the trees. But will we ever learn?

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  20. st. lucia don't even have work for its people but them foreigners want work...all of them on that scam thing...send them back where they below!!!

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  21. Shah go suck salt ;; the (our) Goverment do not owe them nada , except to arrest , charge and to successful prosecute the allege scam artistes ! And to have frozen the lambirds accounts . If the money isn't there they stick in that . And it's a judge who would decide then , how & when the monies is returned ! How many victims , when con artiste , captured and successfully prosecuted were paid back .. If the money is gone and can't be found the government isn't responsible !! I am truly sorry that happened no one should lose their hard earned money via scam ! Con artiste are successful because the follow every thing to a T. If our Goverment employees ( with their usuall laid back attitude) didnt double / Tripple check etc I can lay blame .. They to have to answer how or at least show the nation all document was on the up & up . Don't just stay mute ! External , legal , eduction ministries needs to answer some hash questions and also state re-vamp their standard operating pricedures in that regard !

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  22. I still don't understand how they were allowed entry into the island without a return ticket home. And, were they in the US would they expect Obama to provide them with jobs because they didnt do enough research into the school they paid money to?

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