Archive for November 3rd, 2014

Teen forger dodges conviction

| 03/11/2014 | 54 Comments

(CNS): A 17 year old student narrowly missed ruining his hoped for future career in finance after a judge decided not to convict him formally for what was a crude attempt at forging a fifty dollar bill. He was, however, ordered to undertake 240 hours of community service. In what appears to be more of a high school prank than a real attempt to counterfeit cash the young man who is now 18 admitted photocopying a real CI$50 note and then presenting it, by mistake, to the school receptionist at St Ignatius to purchase goods. Having acknowledged his guilt immediately on arrest and having shown significant remorse, the judge made the decision not to record a conviction against the teen who wants to be an accountant.

When caught the defendant said he had made the fake cash on a photocopier at home, on ordinary paper. He also told the police that making the note was a “lack of judgment” and as a result of what happened, he felt “like a complete idiot”. 

In the wake of the charges against him the young man had apologized to his school and family and during his sentencing hearing last week the court heard that he had committed the offence when he was just 17. With no previous convictions and an honour graduate the teen was described as a high performer, committed to a future career in accounting, which led his defence attorney, Richard Barton, to implore the court to use its powers not to record a conviction.

Given the crude and foolish attempt at forgery, Justice Charles Quin who heard the case said that it was not a very good copy and the teenager had, according to the school learned a lesson as a result of what transpired. He was also said to have handled the aftermath of the foolish behaviour very well. Writing to the court, about the student's potential and what had happened, the school headmaster also appealed to the judge for leniency.

Described by the department of community rehabilitation unit in a social enquiry report as a “respectful and responsible” young man, he had shown “genuine and deep remorse” for the serious error of judgment, they stated, and was rated as having a very low risk of reoffending. The probation officers recommended a non-custodial sentence and also suggested that the judge consider not recording a conviction, which was unopposed by the Crown prosecutors, the court heard.

Given all of the circumstances and despite that forgery is normally viewed very seriously by the courts in the Cayman Islands, the crude and unsophisticated attempt led Justice Quin not to record a conviction. However, the teenager did not get off without some punishment when the judge said he must undertake 240 hours of suitable work in the community with an agency such as public works, the department of education or the National Trust.

The teen was warned however, should he fail to complete the community service he could face a $2000 fine or any other appropriate sentence.

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More multiple break-ins at commercial premises

| 03/11/2014 | 24 Comments

(CNS): Burglars were continuing their crime spree in the industrial areas of George Town early Monday morning, police said. Another five commercial burglaries were reported to the RCIPS between the hours of 4:00am and 5:00am on Monday 3rd November as owners returned to their premises after the weekend. Cash was reportedly stolen from all of the premises involved. The break-ins happened between Owen Roberts Drive, Breezy Way, Boiler’s Road and Shedden Road. The report follows six burglaries which happened at the Cayman Centre on Airport Road last Thursday.

Anyone with any information is asked to call the George Town Police Station on 949 4222, the Major Incident Room on 926 3975 or Crime Stoppers on 949 8477

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West Bay man pleads not guilty to resort safe theft

| 03/11/2014 | 0 Comments

(CNS): Brandon Liberal, 27, pleaded not guilty to charges relating to a burglary at Treasure Island Resort, Friday. He is accused of trespassing and stealing a safe which contained over $100,000 on 6 May 2012. The court heard that Liberal was not alone during the break-in but the police don't know how many others were involved and have made no further arrests in the case. Liberal was charged with the burglary in July and made his first appearance in relation to the offence last month. Currently a serving inmate at HMP Northward Liberal was remanded in custody in relation to the burglary until his trial in August next year.

The crown claims that Liberal and his unknown accomplices removed the entire safe from the resort office making off with KYD $75,104.24 and US $31,701.42 from the popular resort in the heart of Grand Cayman’s tourism district, some time around 4-5am in the morning.

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200 vets converge in Cayman for conference

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(CNS): Some 200 animal doctors from all over the Caribbean and from the United States will be visiting the Cayman Islands this week as the local Veterinary Medical Association (CIVMA) hosts the 28th Biennial Caribbean Veterinary Medical Association (CbVMA) Conference at the Marriott Beach Resort. This event is the leading forum for veterinarians from the region Caribbean and this year’s theme is “Opening New Frontiers in Veterinary Medicine: The Work, The Life, The Balance”. Organisers said the ultimate goal is to improve both animal and human quality of life. The agriculture minister Kurt Tibbetts will officially open the conference tomorrow and Guy Harvey, is the Keynote Speaker at the event that will include practical wet labs and master classes. For more information visit www.cbvma.org

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Airport starts early with recruitment programme

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(CNS): Officials were pressing home the message that no one is ever too young to learn about planes, flying and airport operations. Kids from the Shining Stars Childhood Care and Education Centre were tempted into an aviation career by the Cayman Islands Airports Authority (CIAA) recently when the inquisitive pre-schoolers paid a visit to the airport as part of project they are working on about Air Transport.  Acting chief of airport operations,Erick Bodden provided the children with a tour of CIAA’s Air Traffic Control (ATC) facilities and answered all of their questions. He also said he was very young when his interest in the airport began.

“I truly believe that at a young age you can be influenced into determining what you want to be when you grow up. My father used to bring me to the airport when I was a young boy, which helped me realize my dream of flying and working in the airport industry one day,” Bodden said.

CIAA has participated in several work experience programs, including Passport2Success to give students from schools across the island a chance to learn more about airport operations. 
The students also paid a visit to the Royal Cayman Islands Police Service’s Air Wing Unit and the Fire Service.

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Airport depends on air cannon to scare away birds

| 03/11/2014 | 33 Comments

(CNS): With an early start to the migration season and an abundance of feathered visitors this year, the Cayman Islands Airports Authority (CIAA) is firing its air cannon more frequently than usual to prevent wildlife strikes to aircraft. This year has been very busy, with an abundance of cattle egrets, great egrets, stilts and swallows in the area around Owen Roberts International Airport. The Zon Gun Propane Cannon better known as the “air cannon” is a commonly used piece of equipment that keeps birds away without harming them or interfering with air traffic but officials said that people are complaining about the noise.

The blasts are generated by propane gas that causes a popping noise that scares the birds away.

At recent working group meeting about the problem of birds around the airport CIAA’s senior manager for safety management systems Andrew McLaughlin said  the authority was doing all it could to keep wildlife, from interfering with operations and keep a safe operating environment at the Airport.

“Wildlife strikes can not only be catastrophic, but they also cost the airport industry billions of dollars in damages each year, therefore it’s a major concern for the CIAA.” 

Due to the increase in wildlife, CIAA has extended the hours of deployment of the air cannon, which has caused some complaints from the public.  “While we apologize for the inconvenience, the air cannon serves a higher purpose in maintaining the safety of aircraft operations.”

CIAA also plans on posting signs along the airport fence to alert motorists about the use of the air cannons for wildlife management. The goal is to ensure all passing motorists and residents in the area are made aware of the cannons so they won’t be alarmed by the sound.

CIAA is also encouraging the public to do its part to help prevent wildlife strikes by informing airport staff about wildlife, covering trash cans, picking up garbage and not feeding the birds in the areas surrounding the airport.

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The Singing Christmas Tree 2014

| 03/11/2014 | 0 Comments

(First Assembly): For the fourth year in a row, the First Assembly of God church is producing and hosting the spectacular free Christmas Singing Tree event for locals and visitors alike during two consecutive nights after Thanksgiving – Saturday 29th November and Sunday 30th November.  It features a 25 foot tall singing tree that holds approximately 60 plus talented singers and thousands of lights that provide a colorful show of lights as well.Last year, the Cayman Islands Singing Christmas Tree featured incredible local and international singing anddancing stars as well as a full choir ensemble.

The choir performed songs, skillfully directed by Pastor Ferdinand Nicholls, dance and theatrical routines that brought numerous ovations from the audience as well as a Cayman historical tribute.

Mrs. Elsa Bobb, wife of Pastor Torrance Bobb of the First Assembly of God, had the vision and foresight to create and produce this show and believes that this year’s production will be even better. 

“It was lovely,"she said. "My husband and I still hear comments from people saying how much they enjoyed the Singing Tree and how much they look forward to it each year, now that it has become an annual event.  We are thankful for the hundreds of great people who are involved in this production as we really want all who attend to enjoy a grand and memorable experience and feel the love of God.”

It wasn’t just the spectacle of the large tree adorned with lights and singers, but the theatrical presentation and talented performers that really helped put a Caymanian mark on a truly world class performance. 

The theme this year is “A King is Born”, and for the best seating, patrons are encouraged to come early to this free event which begins just before sunset at 6.30pm on the grounds of The First Assembly of God at 195 Old Crewe Road in George Town.  Children are welcome to attend and there will be concessions available for all for purchase.  There is also a Children’s Choir presentation that both children and adults will love.

To learn more, please visit http://www.caymansingingchristmastree.org or call 929-5380 for more information.
 

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Local to lead Shetty hospital spiritual needs

| 03/11/2014 | 0 Comments

(CNS): A Caymanian has been appointed as the hospital chaplain at Dr Shetty’s health city in East End. As well as attending to the spiritual needs of patients and their family and the staff at the facility Charles D Bush will also serve on the hospital’s newly formed Ethics Committee to help provide answers to difficult issues surrounding modern health care. Although a Christian Bush said he was eager to affirm that Health City Cayman Islands is a multi-faith healthcare setting. “We anticipate providing care to multi-religious patients and their families,” he said.

“I am quite passionate about this rich opportunity to affirm and celebrate diversity and to affirm the common dignity of all persons, whoever they are and wherever they are on life’s journey,” Bush added.

Professionally trained to provide spiritual care in a medical setting, Bush will be an active member of the interdisciplinary healing team at Health City, said Dr Chandy Abraham, Medical and Facility Director at Health City. He has been appointed to the position of Manager, Mission Integration and Spiritual Care, a multi-faceted role.

“Chaplain Bush will not only be working with our patients and their families, he will also provide spiritual support for our staff, working towards creating a culture which supports spiritually centred, holistic care,” said Dr Chandy. 

Bush was born and raised in the Cayman Islands. He earned a Master of Divinity from Emory University’s Candler School of Theology and completed his clinical training in healthcare chaplaincy at Gwinnett Medical Center, a 600-bed hospital system and Level II trauma centre in the Greater Atlanta area. His research areas include pastoral care, faith formation, mental health and outreach to youth at-risk. Chaplain Bush is certified by the Association of Clinical Pastoral Education. He is an affiliate of the Association of Professional Chaplains and a commissioned Episcopal Lay Chaplain (Diocese of Atlanta).

“The role of a hospital chaplain is to assess a patient’s pastoral care needs and create a plan of care, offering comfort and with a non-judgmental, non-anxious presence. Simply put, a hospital chaplain is an extension of the holistic model of healthcare in which the whole person is cared for: body, mind and spirit,” the chaplain stated.

“The spiritual care at Health City is patient-focused and I will be seeking to draw out the resources of the individual. I believe that we are each our own best authority on what our faith or spirituality is. I am committed to working with community clergy and faith leaders, ascollaborative partners in pastoral care,” he added.

Health City’s chaplain said he looked forward to helping the hospital live out its vision of providing person-centered world class healthcare and ensuring that healthcare is accessible to all.

A volunteer Associate Clergy Chaplain and Associate Lay Chaplain programme will also be announced in the near future, officials said in a release about the appointment.

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Cops open enquiry on six burglaries at business site

| 03/11/2014 | 3 Comments

(CNS): Six local business became the latest victims of at least one burglar overnight on Wednesday and Thursday 30 October last week. Police said that very little was taken during the break-ins at Cayman Centre on Airport Road as the villains appeared to be on the hunt for cash, police said. The burglar or burglars broke into Cinico, Caribbean Network Solutions, IATA Travel, Mr. Burger, US Link and Mechanical Solutions. Several glass doors and windows were smashed by the perpetrators sometime between midnight and 6am. Detectives from GTPS – CID are investigating these matters and anyone with information is encouraged to call Crime Stoppers on 800 8477(TIPS).

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Cuban woman remains alone at IDC

| 03/11/2014 | 3 Comments

(CNS): The Cayman Islands government deported 24 Cuban migrants back to their home country last week with the exception of one woman. There has been no comment from officials why the female did not leave with the 17 men and seven woman who left on a chartered flight from Owen Roberts International Airport, Grand Cayman on Wednesday at 11.20 am. Immigration and prison officials supervised the repatriation, including accompanying the migrants on the flight, and they have since returned back to Cayman. The lone woman remains at the Immigration Detention Centre (IDC) in Fairbanks having arrived in Cayman in September.

The CIG recently met with Cuban officials after some problems in that country’s system for the repatriation of migrants that land in Cayman had led to exceptionally long delays in the return of the refugees. After several escapes and a near riot as the numbers of detainees increased significantly the authorities are now hoping that the new agreement with the Cuban government will see future deportations move more quickly.

Cayman has seen an increase in migrants passing through and landing here recently and according to US statistics the number of Cubans arriving there so far this year is already more than double the previous year. In addition, the US coast guard has also noted that in the past around 20% of the refugees were using makeshift vessels to undertake the treacherous journey. This year, more than 80 percent of the migrants spotted at sea have been in rustic boats that the passengers had built themselves.

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