A number of executives at ill-fated Jamaican 4G start-up Symbiote Investment (Caricel) have reportedly been charged with breaches of the Telecommunications Act by the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions. According to the Jamaica Gleaner, the personnel in question are Symbiote CEO Lowell Lawrence, his wife, company secretary, Minette Lawrence, director Natalie Neil and Livingston Hinds of Xtrinet. They have been charged with one count of conspiracy to use spectrum without a licence and five counts of use of spectrum without a licence. The accused are said to have acted in contravention of Section 63A (1) (b) of the Telecommunications Act.
As previously reported by TeleGeography’s CommsUpdate, Caricel placed all of its licensed facilities and operations under the immediate control of Xtrinet on 10 December 2018 – just days after the Supreme Court cleared the way for the government to revoke its telecoms licences. The start-up paid JMD2.65 billion (USD19.4 million) for a mobile licence in May 2016, but attempted to sell its business to South Africa-based Involution Limited in October 2017 – setting the company on a collision course with the Jamaican authorities.