Archive for December 6th, 2011

Gruelling marathon organisers call on local runners

| 06/12/2011 | 0 Comments

ultimate200x200.jpg(CNS):  The 3rd annual Off the Beaten Track marathon race s is scheduled to take place next February and organisers are encouraging people to register early for what they say will be the hardest run yet. The 50k ultra marathon route around Grand Cayman’s less familiar paths willincorporate beach, dyke roads and back streets with water crossings and bush trekking to challenge even the hardiest of long distance runners. The race is open to individual participants, as well as relay teams of six. Following last weekend’s Cayman Islands’ Marathon, local ultra-marathon guru Ken Krys, the driving force behind the race said it presented a perfect opportunity for runners to carry on their training.

He said that Off The Beaten Track is building a reputation and this year organisers were working hard to make it an international ultra-marathon, encouraging entrants from all around the world

“Fresh off the heels of his 100-mile run for diabetes, endurance runner, James Murray of A CrazyIdea fame, has already committed to participating in Off The Beaten Track.  We look forward to learning what “crazy” scheme he has up his sleeve for our race,” Krys said.
“Off The Beaten Track has so many positives for Cayman. It encourages health and fitness, it helps to promote the Islands as a sports tourism destination, and it raises funds for very worthwhile international and local charities.”

Partial proceeds benefit Facing Africa – a charity dedicated to helping children in Nigeria and Ethiopia who suffer from a disease called NOMA.  NOMA is an acute and ravaging gangrenous infection affecting the face. The victims are mainly children under the age of 6, caught in a vicious cycle of extreme poverty and malnutrition. The mortality rate for this disease is estimated at about 90%.

The remaining monies will be donated to Cayman Islands’ charities, in particular those who assist children in the local community.

Early Bird registration is discounted through to 31 December 31st, 2011, so runners are encouraged to register online at www.caymanactive.com.

Those interested in sponsoring should contact Lori Halldorson at KRyS Global on 815-8410, or can visit the website www.offthebeatentrack.ky for more information.

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Sustainable Frank Sound home wins architect award

| 06/12/2011 | 0 Comments

nominations_201110 (274x300).jpg(CNS): SeaGrape House a residential project by John Doak Architecture is this year’s winner of the Governor’s Award for Design and Construction Excellence in the Cayman Islands. Selected from a short list of projects where renewable energy and sustainability dominated the finalists. SeaGrape House was described by Doak as a traditional Caribbean style home, which utilised renewable energy resources and set in the undisturbed surroundings of the seagrapes of the Frank Sound beach-ridge. The owner of the house Janet Morse said Doak had designed a plantation style home that featured renewable energy and a beautiful garden.

“The entire team seamlessly incorporated cutting-edge renewable energy and geothermal technologies while maintaining a lush oasis outside,” she said.

The governor also presented a judge’s commendation for excellence in sustainability and the environment award to Lighthouse Point for its commitment to renewable energy.

All of the six projects that were shortlisted were showcased at the awards ceremony at the Governor’s House on Wednesday 30 November.

The Award developed by the Cayman Society of Architects, Surveyors & Engineers (CASE) and the Cayman Contractors Association (CCA), in conjunction with the governor aims to encourage, foster and maintain innovation, sustainability and excellence in the Cayman Islands construction industry.

The projects were judged on whether and to what extent the design and construction of the nominated project displayed the following attributes: Creativity and Innovation, Sustainability and the Environment, Value, Buildability and Cultural Response.

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Second anonymous witness says Anglin had gun

| 06/12/2011 | 0 Comments

next level_0.jpg(CNS): A second unidentified witness gave evidence via audio link in court on Monday during the third day of Devon Anglin’s trial for murder. Only the second person ever in Cayman to remain completely anonymous during a court hearing, the witness said they had seen Anglin leave the Next Level nightclub with a firearm in his hand moments after Carlos Webster (34) was gunned down.  The anonymous witness, who did not know either the defendant or the victim, had described the men to police and identified them on the CCTV footage. The unnamed witness told the court that they had seen the same two men fighting a short while before the shooting occurred near the nightclub’s bathrooms in the early hours of 10 September 2009.

The second anonymous witness in the trial testified via a voice altered feed that only the judge could hear clearly. The unnamed person admitted that they had not actually seen the shooting because after the fight they had turned away. However, on hearing at least two shots coming from the same area, the anonymous person said they had turned around. Moments later the man who was later identified as Devon Anglin walked past him and the person he was with, holding the gun in his hand before tucking the weapon inside his waistband and walking out of the club.

The witness said that, as the crowds began to depart from the scene of the shooting and leave the club, he or she was able to see the man whom Anglin had been fighting with laying on the ground in a pool of blood.

Anglin is on trial for the killing of Webster, the attempted murder of Christopher Solomon, who received a bullet to the stomach after it passed through the forearm of Webster, and possession of an unlicensed firearm.

The prosecution says Anglin had engaged in two altercations that night involving Webster and Chadwick Bodden, who was put out of the club before the shooting, regarding comments made about Anglin’s girlfriend.

The prosecution says that after Anglin was punched by Webster in another fight, he was seen entering the men’s bathroom. When he came out a few moments later, Anglin was seen by the first anonymous witness to walk over to Webster, pull out a semi-automatic hand gun and shoot him in the side. When Webster hit the floor, Anglin is accused of firing a further shot into his head in front of a packed night club of some 200 people.

Despite the significant numbers of potential witnesses, only one eyewitness has come forward, saying they saw Anglin shoot Webster. The second unidentified witness says they saw Anglin walk out of the club armed with a handgun in the immediate aftermath of the killing but the witness did not see Anglin pull the trigger.

The trial continues in court two on Tuesday.

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Cayman supermarket says no to shark products

| 06/12/2011 | 4 Comments

E2601_Shark%20Cartilage_750mg_90 (200x300)_0.jpg(CNS): Joining a growing regional trend to stop shark fishing and the sale of shark products, Foster’s Food Fair is banning the products from its shelves. Department of Environment Deputy Director Tim Austin explained that sharks are a vital part of the ocean’s food web that help to keep Cayman’s reefs healthy. But the much misunderstood ocean predator is being lost at an astonishing rate, both locally and globally. This is mainly due to the Asian shark fin trade but the demand for alternative health products, such as shark cartilage, is adding to the problem. Shark cartilage has been thought to aid a number of ailments, including cancer, but scientific studies have now shown that it is not effective in halting the growth or spread of tumours.

Despite the use of shark cartilage in the plethora of supplements used to treat other conditions, there is no data to suggest they are effective. 

Unlike bony fish, sharks are very vulnerable to exploitation as they mature slowly, reproduce late in life and they are not prolific, often only producing pups once every two years.

Foster’s Food Fair has taken other steps to help the environment. Along with the islands' other supermarkets, it participates in the reusable shopping bag campaign and it has assisted research on Cayman’s sharks by sponsoring a tag for Coco the Tiger Shark.

Shark in local waters (300x267).jpgThe information from the tag has helped the team from the Department of Environment, Marine Conservation International, Save Our Seas Foundation and the Guy Harvey Research Institute to better understand the movements of sharks in local waters. The team is studying the swimming patterns of the our larger sharks by tracking them both locally and regionally around the Caribbean Sea.

(Photo: Shark in local waters)

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Tourist robbery case collapses

| 06/12/2011 | 37 Comments

court good.jpg(CNS): The crown's case against two men who pleaded not guilty to robbing two visitors in East End in February has collapsed. The judge found no case to answer against one of the men and found the second not guilty after the crown was unable to produce any substantial evidence against either of the defendants. Following the fatal shooting of its key witness, coupled with the refusal of a third co-defendant, who had pleaded guilty to the crime, to testify against the men, the prosecution is left with just one offender in connection with the crime that had rocked the community.

The daylight robbery took place at Barefoot Beach, a secluded area off the Queen’s Highway in East End, when three men with their faces covered approach the couple, who were visitors to the island, while they were sitting on the beach. The men threatened the couple and grabbed the man round the neck and demanded cash.

He gave the robbers his wallet, which contained only $20, and made it clear they had nothing else of value to steal. As they made their escape on foot from the beach, the robbers smashed the window of the couple’s rental car, which was parked nearby, and stole an underwater camera. The victims told police that themen were armed with a baseball bat and a knuckle duster.

Martin McLaughlin (19), Cody McLaughlin (18) and Trent Bodden (30) were arrested by police after the event, along with a number of other suspects from the district. One of those suspects was Asher McGaw, who said he was not the culprit during his interview, but said that Trent Bodden had told him that he along with Cody McLaughlin and Martin McLaughlin had committed the crime.

In the wake of McGaw’s evidence, Martin McLaughlin pleaded guilty while Cody McLaughlin and Bodden both denied having any part in the crime.

Prior to the trial, however, McGaw was shot and killed in a spate of gang related killings, which was not connected to this case but left the crown with a paucity of witnesses. The crown had canvassed Martin McLaughlin to testify against his co-offenders but the man has refused and was remanded in custody until his sentence hearing on 16 December, where he will take the rap for the crime alone.

The judge found that there was no case to answer against Cody McLaughlin, and with only McGaw’s police statement as evidence against him, the judge found Trent Bodden not guilty.

McGaw died from multiple gunshot wounds to his head and body, which was discovered on John McLean Drive just behind the district clinic by a police officer on patrol in East End in the early hours of the morning of Thursday 22 September. 18-year-old Chakame Jamelle Scott was charged with the fatal shooting in October and is currently on remand awaiting trial.

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Green activist keep up pressure on plastic bags

| 06/12/2011 | 9 Comments

turtle-plastic.jpg(CNS):Following the significant reduction in the number of plastic bags going into the George Town dump as a result of a local activists’ campaign against them the group is keeping up the pressure. Cayman BECOME has persuaded the local supermarkets to remove plastic bags completely for two Saturdays each month starting on 10 December to encourage people to bring their own bags or purchase reusable ones. Last year’s campaign which introduced a 5cent charge for plastic bags resulted in an immediate initial fall of some 80% in the number of bags used by supermarkets and ultimately in the land fill.

Foster’s, Hurley’s and Kirk supermarkets have already replaced their  non-degradable plastic shopping bags with biodegradable plastic versions and are actively promoting the use of reusable shopping bags. The cash raised from the 5cents also help to fund other environmental projects including the fight against the invasive lion fish.

Building on this success and to ensure that people keep rejecting the plastic bag the Corporate Green Team Network is launching its next phase starting this Saturday. Every second Saturday of each month, local supermarkets will remove all plastic shopping bags pressing shoppers to either bring their own bags from home or purchase environmentally-friendly, re-usable bags.

Bag the Plastic this Saturday (207x300).jpg“We are confident that this next step will be supported by shoppers who recognize the importance of protecting the environment for current and future generations,” said Network member Wendy Williams.

The Corporate Green Team was formed in June 2009 when Deloitte and the Sustainable Development Unit of the Department of Environment (DoE) struck up a partnership to promote and support increasing awareness and implementation of environmental projects and sustainability initiatives in the Cayman Islands.

The Network’s main aims are to offer members support in environmentally responsible and sustainable practices in the workplace, to generate new ideas and to pool efforts in sharing these experiences with a wider audience. Members are also committed to pursuing particular sustainability issues together outside of their “Green Team” internal groups, which they feel could make a difference in encouraging environmental responsibility and sustainability in the community as a whole.

As a first project, the Network launched its plastic bag reduction campaign. Since then, the Network has also started an aluminium can recycling programme following the idea of a KPMG network member. Currently, three condo developments – George Town Villas, Emerald Beach Club and Cayman Crossing – are on-board. They each have installed special recycling bins, with local company, Recycling Services, collecting the cans and sending them off island for recycling.

For more information on these projects, the Corporate Green Team Network, Cayman BECOME or what to expect from the latest campaign, visit www.caymanbecome.ky or email: info@caymanbecome.ky.

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