Archive for January 2nd, 2013

Cops arrest two women over missing person

| 02/01/2013 | 13 Comments

H Gonzalez December 2012.jpg(CNS): As part of the on-going investigation into the disappearance of Hemerson Raymond Gonzalez, a Guyanese national who was last seen on Tuesday 11 December, two women have now been arrested. Police said that following an operation which took place this morning (Wednesday 2 January) in the Savannah and Prospect areas, the women are currently detained in police custody. A 25-year-old woman was arrested at an address in Canyon Dawn Drive, Savannah, on suspicion of being concerned in the possession of controlled drugs with intent to supply, and a 19-year-old woman was arrested in Prospect on suspicion of misleading the police and conspiring to pervert the course of justice.

Police said that Gonzalez’ mother has been informed of these developments and is being supported by an RCIPS family liaison officer.

Gonzales, who is a frequent visitor to Cayman but not a resident, was last seen some four weeks ago. He had been staying at a friend’s house in Canyon Dawn Drive, where he was allegedly last seen at about 5:30pm.

Despite extensive searches Gonzalez has not been found. He speaks with a Guyanese accent, is about 5’ 8” tall, with a dark brown complexion and curly black hair  He weighs about 180lbs, has a tattoo of a compass on his left forearm and writing tattooed on the inside of his left wrist. When last seen he was wearing brown jeans shorts, a t-shirt and blue low cut cloth shoes. At the time of his disappearance police said that Gonzalez was feeling ill and had been suffering from severe vomiting.

He arrived in Grand Cayman on Sunday, 9 December, and has not been in contact with any friends since Tuesday evening, 11 December. Checks with local hospitals have confirmed that he has not sought medical attention for his illness.

The lead investigating officer on the missing person case is Detective Sergeant Charmane Huntley, who can be reached at George Town Police Station Criminal Investigation Department 9494222.

The RCIPS Major Incident Room has been activated at the George Town Police Station. Anyone with information can call 925-7240 or 926-3975. Police have also created an e-mail account to allow people to send information on-line directly to the incident room

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Missing tourist found safe

| 02/01/2013 | 20 Comments

polic1.jpg(CNS): A 17-year-old teenage girl who is visiting Cayman on vacation with her family was found safe and well Wednesday afternoon thanks to the vigilance of a member of the public. American tourist, Abigail Corless, was reported missing by her parents after she left the condos where they were staying following a family disagreement on New Year’s Day. She was found shortly after 3:30pm today by a member of the public, who had seen the press appeals and the picture of Abigail. Recognising the teenager at a gas station in Walkers Road, he immediately called the police. The officers who arrived found that Abigail was safe and well.

A police spokesperson said that the teenager was taken to George Town police station, where she was to be reunited with her family.

“The RCIPS would like to thank the media and members of the public for their assistance in this matter,” the spokesperson added. However no further details were given on what had transpired since the teen went missing yesterday afternoon, triggering the missing person investigation.

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PFL Playoffs begin this weekend

| 02/01/2013 | 0 Comments

2012pflrally 48 (2) (230x300).jpg(CUC-PFL): The always entertaining 2012/13 CUC Primary Football League (PFL) Playoffs begin Saturday, January 5 at 9:00am at the Annex Field with games scheduled in the Under 9 and Under 11 Champions Cups only. Due to the relatively small number of schools qualifying for this year’s Under 9 and Under 11 Consolation Cups, play will commence in these Cups on Saturday, January 12. Schools qualifying for this year’s Under 9 Champions Cup include 2011/12 runners-up Sir John A Cumber Primary, S. Ignatius Prep, Savannah Primary and Cayman International School from Group A, and defending 2011/12 champions Cayman Prep, Red Bay Primary, South Sound Schools and NorthEast Schools from Group B.

Contesting for the Under 9 Consolation Cup this year will be defending 2011/2012 champions George Town Primary and Truth For Youth from Group A, and Triple C, Prospect Primary and Bodden Town Primary from Group B.

In the Under 11 Champions Cup, 2011/12 runners-up and 2012/13 Opening Rally Champions Sir John A. Cumber, 2011/2012 defending champions George Town Primary, St. Ignatius Prep and Grace Academy will represent Group A, and Cayman Prep, Red Bay Primary, Bodden Town Primary and NorthEast Schools from Group B.

Playing for the Under 11 Consolation Cup will be Cayman International School, Truth For Youth and Savannah Primary from Group A, and 2011/12 runners-up Prospect Primary, South Sound Schools and Cayman Brac representing Group B.

In the Under 9 Division, Cayman Prep and St. Ignatius Prep have yet to taste defeat this season. St. Ignatius Prep drew only one of their five regular season games on their way to topping Group A while Cayman Prep drew two games on their way to winning Group B. The two meet on the second day of the Playoffs on Saturday, January 12.

In the Under 11 Division, Group B winners Cayman Prep begin the Playoffs with maximum points after going undefeated during the regular season scoring a total of 47 goals and conceding only one. Group A winners and 2012/2013 Opening Rally champions Sir John A. Cumber Primary also start the Playoffs undefeated with the only blemish on their record being a 0-0 draw with St. Ignatius Prep on the final day of the regular season.

The two heavy-weights will face each other at noon during the first day of the Playoffs this Saturday.

A complete schedule of the PFL Playoffs can be viewed on CUC’s website at Click on the “About Us” tab on the home page and navigate to “Community Involvement” and “Primary Football League”.

Fans of “the powerful game” are encouraged to head to the Annex Field this Saturday, January 5 as the top schools in the CUC Primary Football League set out on their journey to lift the coveted Under 9 and Under 11 Champions Cup trophies.

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Former TCI leader claims unlawful imprisonment

| 02/01/2013 | 46 Comments

MisickFM01084433_0.jpg(CNS): The former leader of the Turks and Caicos Islands has released a hand-written note from his high security jail cell in Brazil. Michael Misick claims that his human rights are being abused but has made it clear he wishes to return home and face the charges against him if he and his fellow accused are offered the opportunity of a jury trial. In the hand-written message scrawled on note paper, the former TCI premier claims he was legally living in Brazil, having claimed political asylum, and his detention is illegal and part of the UK efforts to humiliate him because of his support for independence.

The former premier has told the UK Consulate in Brazil that there is no reason for an extradition request as he wishes to return to his home country after more than three years in exile.

Misick, who is still wanted by the British authorities in Turks in connection with the on-going corruption investigation, was arrested in Brazil on 7 December by local police on an international arrest warrant as he arrived at the Santos Dumond airport in Rio de Janeiro. The Interpol warrant was supported by another issued by the Brazilian Supreme Court.

From his Brazilian prison Misick claims he is being illegally detained as a political prisoner in a maximum security facility. He also claims that his brother was denied access to him after traveling to the South American country and has accused the UK authorities of lying to the Brazilian government by saying he had escaped from TCI after the warrant for his arrest was issued.  However, the beleaguered former premier has stated he is willing to face the investigators in TCI if he can be assured of a free and fair jury trial.

Following the end of direct UK rule in November, despite the widespread corruption allegations, Misick’s party was narrowly returned to office in the country’s first elections since the investigations began more than three years ago.

According to a release from the TCI governor’s office at the time of his arrest, the UK authorities were grateful to their Brazilian counterparts for their cooperation in the capture of Misick, who has been wanted for questioning by the special prosecution team for several years.

"The arrest was madeby the Brazilian Federal Police acting on an Interpol arrest warrant,” the governor’s office stated. “Michael Misick faces a number of serious charges relating to corruption and maladministration in the TCI. It is in the best interests of the TCI that allegations of wrongdoing are thoroughly investigated and that Misick returns there to answer these charges."

Misick left office having amassed an alleged fortune of some $180m and is suspected of corruption, misusing public money and profiting from the sale of government-owned land. Repeatedly denying any wrongdoing, Misick has always claimed that the takeover by the British is a direct result of his continued fight against UK rule and his support for an independent Turks and Caicos Islands.

See Misick's prison message below.

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Duty concessions extended for 6 months

| 02/01/2013 | 12 Comments

building%20supplies.jpg(CNS): In her first political decision as the finance minister the new premier has announced that the concessions introduced by the former UDP administration on the duty on building materials will be extended until the end of this fiscal year. The duty cut of some 7% on Grand Cayman and now 100% on the Sister Islands was introduce in an effort to stimulate economic activity. Although there is no indication of how much the cut has helped, the new Cabinet has endorsed the extension until the end of June.

“The continuation of this concession is intended to stimulate growth in the economy, and all developers and other stakeholders have an incentive to start or continue their construction activity during this further concessionary period,” Juliana O’Connor-Connolly said.

Under the extended concession, imports of building materials to Grand Cayman will be charged a flat rate of 15% for the period 1 January to 30 June 2013. The normal rate of duty is 22%. Imports of building materials to Cayman Brac and Little Cayman will be on a 100% duty free basis for the period 1 January to 30 June 2013.

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Last day for new voters

| 02/01/2013 | 2 Comments

vote here 2_2.jpg(CNS): As the Cayman Islands faces what is likely to be a volatile election campaign ahead of the May General Election, Wednesday is the last day for qualified people to register to become voters in time for the nationwide poll. The Elections Office in Smith Road, George Town, is open until midnight tonight to give everyone who is entitled to become an elector the opportunity to do so. Supervisor of Elections Kearney Gomez urged everyone to add their names to the list to ensure that when the election comes around they will not be disenfranchised. With well over 16,000 people now on the voters' list, the office is still hoping more people will add their names before the midnight deadline.

The register is updated on a quarterly basis following the process that the office mustgo through to publish the new voters' names and addresses and verify their qualification to vote, as well as allowing existing voters the opportunity to object. 2 January is the last day for the quarter ahead of the election. The full new list will be updated and published on 22 January and existing registered voters will have until 12 February to file any objections.

The Legislative Assembly will be dissolved by the governor on 26 March ahead of nomination day on 27 March, when those running for office will formally declare their intentions before the campaign begins in earnest.

Following the collapse of McKeeva Bush’s UDP government in December in the wake of his arrest on suspicion of theft and offences underthe anti-corruption law, his former five colleagues reformed a minority government headed by Juliana O’Connor-Connolly. With all of the new government holding Cabinet posts and no backbenchers, the government will only be able to limp on until March with the support of the opposition and former colleagues.

Given the divide that now exists among all local politicians, the outcome of the next general election has been thrown wide open, creating what many now believe will be even greater interest than ever in the vote and hopefully encourage more people to register.

Speaking about the importance of taking part in the democratic process, Gomez said there were no good reasons for people not to register given the efforts made by his office and other campaign and activist groups in recent weeks.

“Your vote matters just as much as the next person's but in order to vote you must be registered and this is your last chance,” Gomez said, as he urged everyone who believes they are qualified to come to the office today before midnight.

People with Caymanian status no longer need to be naturalized, opening the door for many more people to join the voters' list and to take part in what will be an historic election on Wednesday 22 May, when voters in the capital will have six votes to cast for an increased parliament of 18 members. Voters in Bodden Town will be casting four votes for the first time, the same number as voters in West Bay, while those on the Sister Islands will have two and those in East End and North Side just one.

For more details visit the elections office website here or call 949 8047.

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2 New Year’s Day muggings

| 02/01/2013 | 23 Comments

crime-scene-tape.jpg(CNS): Updated 3pm – Two victims were assaulted and robbed by gangs of robbers in George Town on New Year’s Day, the police have reported. An RCIPS spokesperson confirmed early Wednesday that a 21-year-old man was the victim of a street mugging at about 4:15am on Tuesday, 1 January, as he was walking in North Church Street close to Kirk's Supermarket. He was approached by three young men who assaulted him and stole his jewellery and wallet. It is believed the robbers fled the scene in a silver Honda Integra, in which a fourth man waited. The second robbery happened on Tuesday night at around 9:20pm near the junction of Goring Avenue and Miss Kippy Lane, also in the downtown area of George Town.

The 38-year-old victim was also approached by three men, one of whom was armed with a knife. They demanded that the victim hand over all valuables. Despite cooperating with the gang of robbers and handing over his possessions, the men assaulted the victim before making their escape on foot.

Although police said there was no immediate evidence to suggest the robberies were connected, officers from the Criminal Investigation Department said they were keeping an open mind and will following the relevant leads. Both victims received minor injuries and police said the robberies appear to be random opportunist attacks.

The descriptions of the robbers in both of the incidents are different, police said. The victim of the first mugging in North Church Street described his attackers as all being aged approximately 21. One had a brown complexion, with medium build, around 5'6", with low cut black hair.

The second had a clear complexion, with medium build and was about 5'7" with a small moustache and beard around the chin. He described the third man as having a brown complexion, brownish coloured hair in braids with a small moustache, while the 4th man had a brown complexion, black hair in single plait braids and styled cuts to the eyebrow.

The second 38-year-old victim described his attackers as being aged between 17 and 20 years old. The first was around 5'10", slim with a brown complexion, wearing a white marina. The second mugger was said to be about 5'10" with a dark complexion wearing a black pullover hoodie and black washout jeans. The third man was said to be 5'5" with a dark complexion, wearing plaid long pants and afro style hair.

The two street muggings come in the wake of a robbery of a visitor on the beach in East End last Thursday afternoon and a gas station robbery on Walkers Road in the early hours of Friday morning.

Anyone with information on these crimes is asked to call George Town CID at 949-4222 or Crime Stoppers at 800-8477.

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