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Mariano wins case vs former Singapore employer
() - February 7, 2010 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - Grandmaster Nelson Mariano II, the former Asian Junior champion now based in Singapore, pulled off a big victory off the chess board when he won his defamation case against former employer Power Chess Asia PTE Ltd. and its manager Lee Fon Man.

In a three-page decision, the Singapore court ruled in favor of Mariano, who claimed he had been maligned by Power Chess Asia and Lee, aka Robert Lee and Samuel Lee, from a series of articles, which came out in the internet besmirching his person.

“This is a big victory for me. Finally, I was vindicated. I’ve been wanting to clear my name from all these unfounded allegations,” said Mariano, who opted to work in Singapore when he retired from competitive chess after a runner-up finish in the Asian Zonal 3.2 in Vietnam in 2007.

Mariano, also a joint third placer in the World Juniors in 1994 in Brazil, worked with Power Chess Asia PTE Ltd. for one year but the management asked him to sign an addendum, stating that if he quits the company, he cannot work in Singapore in anything related to chess for 36 months, failure of which will have him pay PCA S$50,000 (roughly P1.5 million). Mariano resigned and worked for another chess school.

But the PCA accused Mariano of incompetence, an outcast, a thief, a liar and poaching the PCA players to his new chess school. News about Mariano’s ineptitude to coach and conduct chess lessons also circulated in the internet with the PCA also accusing the former Filipino chess prodigy of being a troublemaker, an untrustworthy person with low moral values.

In his affidavit, Mariano said the PCA criticism of his coaching ability didn’t stand up to scrutiny. He also charged that the PCA tampered with the news articles it had presented.

The court subsequently found all PCA’s allegations untrue and cleared Mariano, currently the coacher-trainer of Chesskidz Singapore, of any wrongdoing. The court has also directed that PCA and Lee to be investigated to enable it to ascertain how much damage PCA and Lee should pay Mariano.

“I want to take this opportunity to thank the people who stood by me throughout this ordeal, especially my family, National Chess Federation of the Phils. president Butch Pichay, NCFP director Willie Abalos, Muntinlupa City coach Joel Hicap, chess patron Go Teng Kok and the UE Management and late PE Director Bren Perez,” said Mariano.

ASIAN JUNIOR ASIAN ZONAL BUTCH PICHAY CHESS CHESSKIDZ SINGAPORE DIRECTOR BREN PEREZ GO TENG KOK GRANDMASTER NELSON MARIANO MARIANO PCA POWER CHESS ASIA
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