Archive for November 21st, 2014

CNB robbers acquitted

| 21/11/2014 | 0 Comments

(CNS): The appeal court has overturned the convictions of four out of five men convicted of Cayman’s largest ever bank robbery.The higher court ordered a retrial in the case agaisnt David Tamasa, Rennie Cole, Andre Burton and George Mignot for their part in the 2012 Cayman National Bank case so the men remain in custody for the time being. The conviction of a fifth man in the daylight bank heist – Ryan Edwards, however, was upheld. The appeal court quashed the convictions not as a result of the controversial evidence given by the crown’s lead witness and ‘supergrass’ Marlon Dillon but because of a technical irregularity.

Check back to CNS for the full story later was well as the details on the West Star robbery case where Tamasa’s conviction was also squashed, with no new trial ordered.

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Defendant’s ex-lover went to cops in wake of row

| 21/11/2014 | 0 Comments

(CNS): The court heard that the Leonard Antonio Ebanks’ former lover had gone to the police with the allegation that he had confessed to Frederic Bise’s murder just days after a major dispute between the two of them and the day after he walked out on her. As the case against Ebanks continued Thursday, his ex-girlfriend was probed extensively about the different accounts she had given to the police about the details of the confession by defence attorney, Courtenay Griffiths QC. In one, Ebanks had joined his alleged accomplice, Chad Anglin, with a third unknown man, at Bise’s house after the murder but in another he had gone to meet him alone at the dykes where he had witnessed the killing.

The witness repeatedly said she could not recall or explain why the accounts were so different other than her being confused, and having difficulty remembering what she had said to the police over the six years. However, the attorney said she had problems with the details because she was lying.

“The problem with telling lies is that you need to have a good memory and you don’t,” the lawyer shouted, as he subjected her to vigorous cross examination on behalf of his client Ebanks, implying her confession was fabricated as a result of malice.

However, the woman stuck to her position that Ebanks had told her he was involved in the Bise killing and that he and his cousin Anglin had killed the man because he owed Anglin money.

The West Bay man is accused of murdering Bise, a Swiss banker, whose badly beaten body was found in the back of his burned out car in February 2008 outside his Mount Pleasant home. The charges against him are based largely, the crown claims, on confessions made by two women who were not known to each other and who told the police that Ebanks had revealed his part in the killing to them two years apart.

When Ebanks’ former lover first took the stand, Thursday, she said that Ebanks had told her around two weeks after the killing that he and Anglin were alone when they killed the “white man” who, she said, was dressed as a woman, in the dykes. They had then taken his body back to the banker’s home in West Bay and set the car alight and Ebanks had then stolen items from the dead man’s home. The witness, who cannot be named for legal reasons, said that Ebanks had told her he had taken some jewellery from the banker’s home including a silver chain with a cross pendant. She also stated that she had found a number of other items in the closet that were taken after the murder.

Ebanks’ ex-lover also revealed that even though she had been told by him that the piece of jewellery had been stolen from the victim of the murder she wore the silver cross and chain to her baby’s christening service. However, under cross examination the court heard that both Bise’s wife and his close friend and landlady had told the police that the chain and pendent did not belong to Bise, despite her claim.

The attorney probed the witness hard about every detail of the confession, she had allegedly heard from Ebanks, as he accused her of lying because Ebanks had left her after an eight on-off relationship in which he had used her for sex and money. She had gone to the police the day after Ebanks had walked out on her.

However, the witness continued to deny that she was lying about Ebanks making the confession but could not remember all the details.

The lawyer also probed why she was in contact with a police officer, from the cold case unit, on an almost daily basis over the last few years leading up to the trial and the witness stated that it was the officer who was repeatedly calling her.

When Ebanks was arrested in April 2008 and then again in 2013 he had implied on both occasions that the police were paying his former lover to give them a witness statement against him and that the information that she had about the murder had not come from Ebanks but from the police.

Griffiths also attempted to shake the crown’s position that neither of the women who Ebanks had confessed to knew each other when he pointed out that she was well aware of where the woman lived as it was described as a “drug yard” frequented by Ebanks on a regular basis and a place that she had also visited. However, Ebanks’ ex denied ever going in despite admitting crossing the address on an almost daily basis as it was close to her own home.
The case continues Friday in Grand Court one with evidence from the same witness.



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Progress report published on UK-CIG shared goals

| 21/11/2014 | 9 Comments

(CNS): Just two weeks ahead of the Joint Ministerial Council in London between the UK government and its overseas territories set to take place during the first week of December a progress report on the agreed goals between Cayman and the UK governments has been made public. Security, employment, education, the environment and international financial services were the main areas prioritised by the UK and its territories and an account of what’s been done in an effort to  achieve them are outlined in what was described by officials as a progress report.

Urging the Cayman Islands public to read the 17-page document, which is posted below, Premier Alden McLaughlin, said it reflected the depth of the government’s commitment to consolidate ties with the UK.

“Our work so far has laid a great foundation on which we will continue to build. The UK will also contribute in a number of areas, including increased access to various commercial, educational, training and other opportunities. I hope Caymanians and residents will take the time to learn more about these programmes and the advantages that they offer,” McLaughlin said.

The report focuses heavily on Cayman’s efforts to address unemployment and education as well as work undertaken regarding the offshore sector and the areas that the UK has identified as being of a potential risk to it in the territories.

The details of the government’s trip to London and the usual pre-JMC meetings have not yet been revealed by government officials.
See report in full below

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West Bay man steals food in bakery break-in

| 21/11/2014 | 10 Comments

(CNS): A 50 year old West Bay man appeared in court Thursday following his arrest on Tuesday in connection with a burglary at a bakery where he was accused of stealing food. The man was charged in relation to a break-in at the Caribbean Bakery in West Bay, as well as drug offence. The burglar happened at the local bakery and store last Thursday (13 November) and police said “food items” were taken.  A 55 year old male resident of George Town will also appeared in court Thursday charged in connection to the booze burglary which occurred at a Mini Ware House in the Industrial Park between Sunday 16 and Monday 17 November when a large quantity of alcohol was stolen.

Investigations into that burglary and other similar offences are ongoing and the RCIPS warned people that it is an offence to receive any goods which they believe may be stolen. If approached you should contact the police immediately.

Anyone with information on crime in the Cayman Islands are asked to call the RCIPS Major Incident Room tip-line at 949-7777 or Crime Stoppers on 800 8477(TIPS).

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MRCU starts aerial attack to curb mozzies

| 21/11/2014 | 23 Comments

(CNS): Asconcerns rise that Cayman could see a surge in chikungunya virus and dengue due to  a outbreaks and growing numbers of people being infected with both disease around the region the Mosquito Research & Control Unit (MRCU) is conducting targeted aerial operations over some 12,000 acres of mosquito-breeding swamp areas on Grand Cayman from Thursday. The mosquito attack will involve low-level flights during the mornings and late afternoon. The operation will start in the area of West Bay and finish on the north side of the island. Weather permitting; the full application should be complete within ten days.

The distinctive red and white MRCU aircraft will be applying the small pellets specifically designed to target mosquito larvae developing in aquatic habitats; this means preventing the occurrence of biting mosquitoes. 

Once the rains begin, the pellets are activated and will provide control for up to two months.  Low-level flights over specific areas are necessary to ensure that correct application and successful control of mosquitoes is achieved.

This is the third island-wide treatment this year, on Grand Cayman, and the Sister Islands.
This will assist in providing control through the Christmas period to January next year. Some 12,000 acres of swamp are targeted in this operation in Grand Cayman, 320 acres in Cayman Brac and 475 acres in Little Cayman.  Due to elevated mosquito breeding in Little Cayman, the aerial application in the Sister Islands was completed several weeks ago which is slightly earlier than usual.

Further information and daily schedules can be found on the Mosquito Research & Control Unit’s Facebook page or website  A daily update of the areas being treated will also be available on those sites.

Please call MRCU with any enquiries on 949-2557

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