Venezuelan Ambassador, Dr. Philbert Aaron, has filed a civil lawsuit against calypsonian “Checko” in reference to a song performed at last year’s calypso competition.
According to a statement of the claim, in the suit DOMHCV15 of 2013, the song refers to the claimant by his designation and initial “Ambassador A.”
“The Claimant fears that unless restrained by this Honourble Court, the Defendant shall continue to publish the slanderous and libelous statement complained of,” a section of the suit reads.
The suit is claiming for damages for libel and slander; aggravated damages; exemplary damages and an injunction restraining the Defendant from further publishing the offending words or other words that are defamatory to the Claimant.
This is not the first time the song, “Bug Her,” has landed Checko, whose real names is Abel Jno Baptiste, in hot water.
On February 8, 2012 he was served with a legal letter from Aaron’s lawyer, Noelise Knight Didier, which claimed the song made reference to her client.
“Our instructions are that you have caused this song to be recorded in permanent form and broadcast publically via radio …We are instructed however, that your said song quite clearly makes reference to our client, by the description as well as by the use of his office and initials, ‘Ambassador A’ and further that you allege therein that he ‘bug her,’” Knight Didier wrote.
“This,” the letter stated. “Is an obvious innuendo understood by the average reasonable Dominican to mean, that you are stating that my client is engaged in buggery.”
Last year’s letter continued, “You must be aware, sir, that not only is such an allegation disparaging of my client’s morals, but is moreover an allegation that my client is involved in a criminal activity. Such defamation of character may not only expose you to civil liability, but to criminal prosecution as well a fact that must be well aware of given your profession.”
The letter warned Checko to removed the the “offending lyrics” from the song and failure to comply would lead to legal action.
Reports had surfaced last year that Checko was going to change the lyrics of the song but he subsequently said they would remain the same. He said the decision was based on consultations with his attorney.
The calypsonian is represented in the matter by J. Gildon Richards.