On Wednesday June 6, 2017, the Chief Executive Officer of the port Mr. Mark T. Mingo was detained by the local authorities in connection with the ongoing “Emerald” investigations. The investigation team has placed Mr. Mingo under restrictive custody due to which no further details can be shared at this stage.
On Friday, June 9, 2017, the Council of Minister of St. Maarten, as shareholder of the Port St. Maarten Group of Companies, authorized Shareholder Representative Minister Mellissa Arrindell-Doncher to appoint port management officials Tonny Wouter van Kooten and Richard van der Mark as persons temporarily entrusted with the management of the port.
Minister responsible for port affairs Mellissa Arrindell Doncher explained that Van Kooten and Van der Mark will form a managing board for the company for as long as CEO Mark Mingo is not able to fulfill his function as CEO of the company. The appointments were made in accordance with the company’s articles of incorporation.
The Minister stressed that the everyone deserves a fair trial under the law and that Mr. Mingo is innocent until proven otherwise. Mr. Mingo’s attorney has issued a press release that Mr. Mingo denies any wrongdoing and faces the future with complete confidence. According to port officials, the justice authorities explicitly stated that the Port is not a suspect in any ongoing investigation.
The Minister met with the Supervisory Board of the port on Friday morning to discuss the immediate future as business at the port continues. In this regard, the Minister spent the day reaching out to stakeholders, in particular the Florida Caribbean Cruise Association (FCCA) and its President Michele Paige, to assure the association and its cruise lines that Port St. Maarten is open for business and ready to provide its usual quality service and operational excellence.