Bridger’s undercover persona flew business class

| 14/10/2009

(CNS): According to the latest revelations about the special police investigation team (SPIT) and Operation Tempura, during the covert part of the operation SIO Martin Bridger and his sidekick, Simon Ashwin, posed as businessmen and therefore had to fly business class when travelling to protect their cover at the expense of the Cayman tax payer. In his special report on the lack of financial management of the investigation, Auditor General Dan Duguay reveals that almost CI$1 million was spent on travel alone by SPIT up to June of this year and no one was supervising the amounts claimed.

Duguay said that during the course of his office’s investigation he discovered that SPIT was spending thousands of dollars on business class airline tickets to prevent their cover from being blown but no one had oversight of how much was being spent on travel, an area, he states, where the investigation could have economized.

“We found several decisions or lack of decisions that affected the costs throughout the life of the investigation,” the report states. “The need to fly police officers in more expensive airline seats and the frequency of their travel were not issues dealt with by any administrative officer in government.”

Duguay’s office also found that no attempts were made to assess whether savings could have been made on accommodation that the officers were using. Duguay said there were many opportunities when the officers could have been accommodated more cheaply, as well as where travel costs could have been reined in, but no one was checking. Up until June 2009 Duguay’s office estimated that more than $573,000 was spent on residential accommodation for SPIT and a further ¼ of a million on their offices.

Duguay noted that many of the expenses incurred by the officers were just presented for payment by Bridger himself. “While we found the cheques signed to be properly ‘approved’ by the various departments involved the approvals were based on recommendations for payment to be from the Senior Investigating Officer, a non Cayman Islands Government employee,” the special report states.   

The revelations during the judicial review which found that Justice Alex Henderson had been unlawfully arrested by SPIT, the release of the chief justice’s rulings, the evidence presented during the most recent trials of Lyndon Martin and Rudy Dixon and this latest report from the auditor general have enabled the people of Cayman to put together a picture of how this so-called police corruption allegation unfolded.

During the so-called covert period when Bridger and Ashwin arrived on island in September 2007 the two men were posing as property developers and staying at the Comfort Suites on Seven Mile Beach. 

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  1. Anonymous says:

    What kind of oversight did George McCarthy have?  He should be held accountable for not ensuring that Cayman got value for money. That was his job!!!

    • Anonymous says:

      Absolutely correct. Any confidence that Mac has in him is completely misplaced as demonstrated by the failures in supervising Tempura. 

  2. Anonymous says:

    It is sad to know these.  I have seen little school kids wash cars and sell cookies, cakes and buns to raise couple of hundred dollars for school supplies or for various other worthy causes where the government cannot provide enough funds.  Presently, the Hospital is lacking essential life saving equipment and diagnostic tools due to lack of available funds.  so how does the Governor finds $6-7 million dollars of hard cash for this special investigation.  Where is this money tree located???  What motivated him to pay Bridger more than $500,000 in salary and first or business class travel for the Met team.  This is a dalight roberry in the Cayman Islands.  I believe there is possible corruption in this matter and it warrants a criminal investigation.

  3. Joe Average says:

    Sitting covertly in business class with sunglasses on:

    "so why are you two going to grand cayman?"

    "can’t tell you."

    "ohhhhh.  i get it."  "that’s why i’m going there too.  wink wink

    "do you work for the metropolitan police??"


    "neither do we."

    "so where are you staying?"

    "can’t tell you."

    "ohhhh.  i get it.  top secret, right?"

    "can’t tell you."

    "gentlemen, would either of you like an o’rderve?"

    "can’t tell you."


    "can’t tell you."



    "can’t tell you."

    On covert arrival:


    "yeah mon?"

    "governor’s mansion."

    On the way to the mansion:

    "so baldheads…u come here fi drink milk?  or u come here fi count cow?"

    "what did he say??"

    "can’t tell you!"

    Because it was all so covert.  Maybe we could pay them with invisible money??


  4. No Boy! says:

    Where can I find a copy of this AG report online?

    CNS: Look on the RHS column of this page, near the bottom

  5. John Evans says:

    What is funny is that all this ‘covert’ BS didn’t stop at least one of them being detained by US Immigration as he tried to come through Miami.

    Sadly, you will probably find that under Met rules some of them were entitled to travel Business Class anyway, there has just been a big story over here about how much was spent flying officers around the world.

    However, it would be interesting to find out if the same deal was made for visiting family members.


  6. Anonymous says:

     What a load of crap!  We spent millions so this plod and his pals could play 007!  I’m well aware these are the kinds of deals negotiated when this sort of thing happens, but we got no value for money.  I’m ALSO aware on what that chap based his advice that misconduct in a public office was an arrestable offence, but the fact remains that determinative conclusions are reached ‘according to law’, that is what a court does, and according to law everyone accused by this investigation is innocent and we have been had.

    Certainly, the initial premise of this investigation was false.  We need to tell all UK figures who have to deal with Cayman that certain people (inclusive of Big Chief Macalomaniac) are not to be trusted or believed.  So, perhaps the best illustration yet that it is in both Cayman’s and the UK’s interest that there be some local involvement in law enforcement.  Real involvement, not the careful sowing of doubt and confusion based on ulterior motives by questionable persons!

    • Anonymous says:


      " during the covert part of the operation SIO Martin Bridger and his sidekick, Simon Ashwin, posed as businessmen and therefore had to fly business class when travelling to protect their cover at the expense of the Cayman tax payer. "


      You’re cover’s blown now!!!

      What a waste. Thanks Jack!!!

  7. Anonymous says:

    even if it did make any sense for about one second, why not fly as a tourist in shorts and flip flops sitting in economy? But what am I thinkin? We are dealing with imperior individuals from the UK who are so well experienced, showing us stupid Caymanians how to do things properly.

    People, it is time to remind your representatives why you voted them in, so don’t take this lying down. Ask them to file the respective complaints in the UK to ensure that this has consequences for others, and not just the folks who reside in Cayman……. 

  8. Anonymouse says:

    All the more reason for Jacko to packo and leaveo as soon as possible.

    And dont pay no Business or First Class for him.

  9. Anonymous says:

    I have never heard more Bullshit in my life !!!!!!!!

    • Anonymous says:

      Hello CNS. Please don’t get weary in monitoring the foul language. You’ve been great in the past. Please keep it up. Thanks.

  10. Anonymous says:

    "to protect their cover"?????  I am sure that no one on those flights comint to Cayman on buisness or pleasure would have cared who these guys were!!  Someone needs to be held accountable for this fiasco!  And I mean criminally!  However given the conviction rate in the courts recently maybe just "straight to jail" would be best!!

    • Don't worry I wont stay says:

      The white socks and national health specs would have given them away on arrival. The dark tans and Prada sunnies allowed them to slip out unnoticed.