UK tabloid exposes Bridger

| 16/10/2009

(CNS): Just when Cayman thought the situation regarding Operation Temupra and the Special Police Investigation Team (SPIT) couldn’t get any worse, a leading British tabloid is running an exposé in its Saturday edition which reveals the fiasco in lurid details. The Daily Mail, which has a circulation of around 2.2 million (some 4 million readers), has managed to secure pictures of SPIT at work and play that offers more on the real story of the so called corruption investigation than hitherto realised. Daily Mail journalist Stephen Wright reveals that Scotland Yard is also refusing to take responsibility for the $7milllion failed investigation. (Photo: SIO Martin Bridger runs along SMB wearing rubber ring)

Bound to create further uproar locally, the pictures of one detective sleeping as his desk, Bridger on board his boat, as well as those of his apartment which was paid for out of the Cayman purse, along with SPIT drinking and partying, suggest that what the Daily Mail has knicknamed the ‘Sunshine Squad’ may not have been as committed to the integrity of the investigation as Governor Stuart Jack has led Cayman to believe.

In his story Wright says there is no suggestion that the so-called Sunshine Squad should not have had any leisure time during their stay, financed by the Cayman government. “Yet the photos, which also show 54-year-old Bridger on his motorboat and a barefoot colleague snoozing in the police incident room, will hardly help their cause as the inquests into the fiasco continue,” he writes.

Reporting on Auditor General Dan Duguay’s findings, which were published this week, Wright outlines the hefty bill which SPIT, and in particular Bridger, clocked up during their 18 month stay. (Photo: Dectective Shafquat Ali at work in the offices above Ford Street Market)

“The controversy is hugely embarrassing for the Met as the Sunshine Squad was led by officers from it’s ‘whiter than white’ Directorate of Professional Standards (motto: ‘integrity cannot be compromised’),” Wright reveals in his articl.

He also explains how retired British High Court judge, Justice Sir Peter Cresswell, who conducted a judicial review of the unlawful arrest of Justice Alex Henderson found that Bridger’s team had ‘misled the courts’, made ‘deliberate misrepresentations’, and that their behaviour was ‘arbitrary and unfair’ and ‘reflected the gravest abuse of the process’.

Wright says the Sunshine Squad consisted of eight officers at any time and that payment approvals for the officers were based on recommendations from Bridger, who when he retired from Scotland Yard, remained in charge of the inquiry for a further 12 months as a Cayman Islands ‘government consultant’ on a hugely-inflated salary until he was kicked off the inquiry in April this year. (Photo: Bridger, Ashiwn and Worthington)

Wright also states that John Yates, Assistant Met Commissioner, made five visits to the Cayman Islands and when asked about the AG’s findings, Scotland Yard said it didn’t believe Duguay’s report criticized the Metropolitan police:  “We do not accept that the conclusions of the Cayman Islands’ auditor general’s report criticised the Met or the investigative team,” Scotland Yard said. “The criticisms contained within the report were levelled at the Strategic Oversight Group, who were based locally in the Cayman Islands and are entirely separate from the Met. The Met was asked to provide a small team of detectives and police staff to assist the Cayman Islands Government anti-corruption investigation at various times since the investigation started in September 2007. As this inquiry was on behalf of the Cayman Islands Government it was agreed that they would meet operational costs.”

Wright also reported that there was no answer at Bridger’s £500,000 semi-detached home in Surrey as he is believed to be away with his family. CNS was unable to confirm speculation that Bridger is here in Cayman visiting the beachfront condo he allegedly purchased while he was a member of SPIT.

 Go to Daily Mail article and photos


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  1. Anonymous says:

    The sad fact is that Cayman needs some outside independant Policing. With such small communities on the Islands if a brother, uncle, father or any family member gets caught for almost any crime by the RCIPS chances are they are related somehow!, that’s where "COLLUSION" happens!!. Like Britain the main cause of the rise in crime is drug related, the increase in robberies at knife and gun point are going to stop tourism in its tracks, including cruise visitors. Look at Jamaica, you can’t let drugs win!!. Families need to be able to trust the Police and give evidence, that’s what is holding progress back.

  2. Anonymous says:

    You could have paid me $7 dollars to tell you that we dont have corruption here. Why we spent $7 million to arrive at the same result still leaves me speechless. 

    Cayman does not have corruption we have "COLLUSION"… get it right, and no Scotland Yard detective is going prove it, not unless they have great psychic ability and a knack for eliciting confessions.  

    The whole case started off on the wrong foot. The govenor should have gotten his facts straight before bringing in the Brits/Bridger.

    What a waste!


  3. Disgusted says:

    ARE YOU SERIOUS? I don’t even have to read the article. The pictures speak louder than any words here. So this is where the Cayman Islands money has gone? $500k+? Not to mention the lawsuits that have been thrown against the Islands and the fact that these people were able to sue while still being paid their regular salary. And to think that HE has the nerve to show his face on TV trying to justify this whole fiasco.

    No Mr. Jack, we do not want issues to go unresolved and uninvestigated… but where it is seen fit. YOU should be the one to pay for all of this. Not the Government, and not the people. If you cared so much about this country, you would have spent that money on something real. For example trying to find ways to solve these unsolved murders and robberies. Did you ever think about doing that? Bridger being the expert that he is, should have been hired to get real criminals off the street… but I can see where his expertise is, lounging at ‘work’ and floating with the rubber duckies. I wonder if the MET team needs any one else to work, because I would certainly love to walk into the office and put my feet up while being paid what they were! I’m glad it was a UK tabloid who exposed this scandal.

    Thank you CNS for keeping us updated as usual!

  4. Anonymous says:

    Guys – really and truely the fault lies with the governor. If someone offers you a rediculous salary are you not a fool if you don’t take it. The governor isresponsible for the checks and balances and must be held responsible.

    • Anonymous says:

      I agree that the blame must rest with the Governor. 

      I see that one newspaper (don’t need to say which one) was this morning pontificating that the Governor was putting the blame where "it rightfully belongs), and supporting the Governor’s position that he does not control the purse strings.

      As if to say anyone is going to say no to the Governor. All good civil servants know that if you want to progress in the civil service when you are told to jump what you say is how high.  The service does not like quesitoners.  If you try to buck the big guns you know where you will get — no where.

       He, the Governor, is the man in charge of the civil service — and don’t we all call recall that one of the key players in this Tempura drama was given some extra assurance when he responded to the call to sign some ill-fated search warrants?  And what was that assurance?  It was that "The Governor knew."  So it was ok.  Don’t worry about a thing!

      So what is this about the Governor not controlling the purse strings — well, maybe not technically, but he very much does in practical terms.  

      As a former civil servant, once the Governor gives the green light for something to happen, people usually fall into line, and if it is a matter of money, they find it.

      Seriously, I cannot abide this passing of the buck, when we all know that Tempura was his baby, and that all roads led to him when it came to major decisions regarding Tempura.  

      If he delegated authority to an oversight group, which he appared to have done, then he should havebeen keeping a close eye on its operations.  Certainly, the "Governor knew" about quite a few things — so much so that it was used to give assurances.  

      What could be more important that costs?  Or is that only when it applies to locals?  

      You know this gives ample evidence to the local belief that there are one set of rules for the expats (usually Brits) and one for the locals.  

      Anyway, good luck, Governor, in trying to deflect blame.  No one is really lending much credence to that.  

      If you didn’t exercise your enormous powers of control — that is even worse — you were, and probably are, asleep at the helm.  


  5. please, pull my finger says:

    All roads lead to Desmond Seales….

    He must be having a good laugh off all of this very expensive nonsense that his tentacles sparked.

    Talk about a chain reaction of escalating bulls—t that should never have been taken seriously by serious people.

    "No one should fault the scoundrel when so many fools follow in his train without so much as a thought to the wise."

    –Emerson Wasserman

  6. Anonymous says:

    Martin Bridger’s behaviour and that of his merry men was immoral and dishonest. No one I believe questioned the need to conduct an investigation into corruption and inappropriate practices in the RCIPS, but what these MET officers have done is to undermine the whole ethos of honesty and integrity for self promotion & greed. The governor Stuart Jack ought to be ashamed of himself to have been duped in the manner that he has been. This also goes for the officials from Government who displayed a high level of naivity.

    Now we have Operation Cealt, that like Tempura may produce absolutely nothing. Not because there isn’t something to look at, but because it is conducted by a group of second rate MET officers whose only motive is to line their pockets and have a good time on the island at their sponsers expense. Shame on you all, I see you for what you really are.   

  7. Concerned Reader says:

    It should now be very lucid to a blind man that the Brits want us to go independent, this is what they have done for centuries, when one of their territories have exhausted their usefulness to them. We need to understand as a British territory that we are but a mere pawn in their game of chess, but the UK is the master at the game that they have perfected for many moons.

    A date needs to be now set/negotiated with the UK so that we can become masters of our own destiny. At least if we mess it up, we will have no one to blame, but clearly the UK does not have our own best interests at heart. This bodes the question – did they ever have our interests at heart, despite the allegiance of some of our old guard Caymanian senior citizens who never had to really deal with them in their lives in contrast to many of the baby boomers.

  8. John Evans says:

    That penultimate paragraph sums it all up….

    I can tell from my on-going dealing with the Met they are frantically back-pedalling and trying to blame everything that went wrong on the Cayman Islands. Prior to Lyndon’s trial the Met were being very cooperative, now everything is referred to the RCIPS and Commissioner Baines despite the fact is very clear that the Met are still pulling the strings.

    Incidentally, the £4800 they quoted for Bridger’s first class fare is almost exactly what the Met just told Baines not to authorise payment to me and that claim is for three months expenses including two lots of flights to the UK!

  9. noname says:

    Great job by the Brit journalist. So how did the Compass get scooped by a newspaper that’s an entire ocean away?

  10. Anonymouse says:

    Bridger has been spotted vacationing on Varadero Beach in Cuba.

    According to the source he sends his best regards to all the friends he made in the Cayman Islands and cant wait until his status is granted to move back full time.

    • Anonymous says:

      Thatswhy his Boat was named after that famous Cuban cocktail made of suger, mint leaves, rum and soda water. "MOJITO"

  11. Anon says:

    It is very clear to me that a number of allegations were dreamed up by Martin Bridger for one reason only – to keep the CI$20K + pay check each month coming for as long as possible.

    Who authorised this outrageous sum of money?  It is especially distasteful knowing it has been paid to someone of such blatant incompetence.

    I know two of the innocent people who have faced ludicrous accusations by Bridger and have seen the personal price they have paid and continue to pay for this man’s folly and greed.

  12. Anonymous says:

    These photos had to be submitted by one of bridger’s clan. I guess someone is not happy that they didn’t get the aount of money he got!

  13. Joe Average says:


    Police announced in June they were launching full inquiries into several MPs and peers, understood to include Mr Morley and Labour MP David Chaytor, both of whom claimed for non-existent mortgages.

    Also thought to be under investigation is Baroness Uddin, who has been accused of claiming an empty Maidstone flat was her main residence so she could claim an allowance for peers who live outside the capital.


    I’m on the next plane!  This is outrageous.   I’ll be staying at the Savoy.  And I’ll need 30 or 40 Caymanians to come with me to conduct interviews.  We’ll need some expense money $1,000,000 CI ought to do it.  For now.  I’m not sure how long it will take.  Dress warm it’s colder than here.

  14. Anonymous says:


    Mr. John Yates, the Assistant Metropolitan Police Commissioner also known as ‘Yorky’ has hired a well known and long established private investigation firm in the Cayman Islands to investigate some of our upstanding and well recognised Caymanians. They have placed investigators in key positions or have made contact with employees in key positions where these Caymanians work in order to snoop and gather information. It has been confirmed that a substantial amount of info has been gathered including personal and passed on to ‘Yorky’ and his team.

    Wasn’t it said the Met Police was not involved with the investigations, and the investigators consisted of retired Met Police officers only? 

    We need to insist to the governor, both outgoing and incoming that we dislike these actions and wish for them to cease their operations and leave this jurisdiction.

    A concerned Caymanian.

  15. i own a dog says:

    Can someone check with Dan the Man and see if we paid for the rubber ring Bridger is wearing? 

  16. anonymous says:

    Now we know the real reason for the OVERSIGHT group… be the Fall Guys in case the Operation goes public!! and of course you were all sworn to secrecy and allegiance to the Queen so you cannot even clear your own name!  This is British Colonialism at its BEST…..FCO – 1, Oversight Group – 0


    Caymanians, next time a Governor puts you into this situation just say "No thanks, been there, done that". And no, we do not want Independence or we would say so….we just want justice, transparency and good governance.


    Guarantee we will just read that Gov Jack left "yesterday" taking "vacation time" in UK ahead of official "departure". 


    Ezzard, I think you just won the next election (in any district!) 

  17. Anonymous says:

    Visit the Daily Mail website and have a look at the piece in all its glory it has been given top billing , they have made Mr Bridger look like the clown that he is – if he is in Cayman I hope he doesnt have a relaxing time bearing in mind the fact he ripped Cayman off he doesnt deserve to have a place on your island . I am a UK citizen and dont understand why he was paid so much .  I’d have every restaurant , shop , bar , hotel, fastfood takeaway , car rental , taxi company  etc bar him and his family afterall dont make it easy for him to stay – I appreciate he will have people who can bring food in for him however he wont want to stay on an island where his family cant go out and eat / shop themselves.


  18. Anonymous says:

    The Daily Mail isnt a tabloid like The Sun or The Mirror it is classed as a mid market newspaper like The Express  – it is read by the middle classes  and carries a lot of power readership wise  , it also has a massive online following on the world wide web and is the UK ‘s most visited newspaper website  this piece is slap bang on the front page  of the online edition with the photo’s so millions will have seen the article and the photo’s.

    It has massive readership in the UK especially the Saturday & Sunday print editions and is the second largest selling newspaper in UK across all categories , most Saturdays you get a free DVD or CD with your paper and this weekend its The Graduate so it encourages even more people to buy it !!

    This story may actually be picked up by one of the broadsheets in UK  seeing the prominence the Daily Mail has given it and the concern about officials and corruption going on

    • Anonymous says:

       The Mail is as good as a tabloid and is relying on it’s "old image". It is always full of sensationalist rubbish, just like the tabloid the Sun

    • Anonymous says:

      No, but it acts like one.

  19. Anonymous says:

    I hope all these senior civil servants and those of us who kow-tow to these englishmen as we were indoctrinated growing up (I’m 43) can break these mental chains that we collectively have and see through the mist…don’t let their englishness frighten you…read up on Ormand Panton’s biography…and Bertie Ebanks "Cayman emerges"  (Capt. Farrington…he wa’ man!)…we need to think as caymanians…and be caymanians…and ACT CAYMANIANS!!..Donnie yuh hear!!


    • Anonymous says:

      George delegated the oversight to Donnie And we know from the Henderson trial what he did and for doing such a job he has been promoted to CS. Scandulous!

  20. Anonymous says:

    OK so I am a Brit by birth been in Cayman since I was 12,  I am far from 12 now…and even I think these guys are the biggest jerks alive…how lazy can you be ….. I call myself Caymanian for one smple reason morals…Brits seems to have lost theirs oh and thier Marbles!


    Bye bye Jack, go and dont look back.


    God bless Cayman.

  21. Anonymous says:

    If anyone has followed British politics in recent years, there are many examples of numerous governmental offices and civil servants, "Not fit for Purpose". 

    Unlike many I do not believe in the conspiracy theory of these individuals, rather I lean toward "Not fit for Purpose"..

  22. Anonymous says:

    I guess crime does pay…

  23. Joe Average says:

    He is not walking on the beach with a floater ring!!  That is a survelliance antenna.  Used for covert communications.  He is not sleeping at his desk!! He’s meditating.  Have some decency. Besides that they’re not partying!!  They’re disguised as developers.  

    You folks jump to too many conclusions from just one set of pictures.

    And that is not a pleasure craft!!  It’s actually a submarine and those two women are secret agents that have just arrived. 

    Now their covers are blown thanks to CNS!!!  And they have to go back to the UK at the beginning of winter!!!  I hope you’re satisified.

  24. NSS says:

    Thank you, John Evans!

    • Anonymous says:

      How lame of Scotland Yard to blame the Oversight Group.  So the Met rips us off, don’t deliver value for money, but don’t blame them — they only pocketed the money.

      True to form, the real culprit manages to escape blame — in the civil service, if you can’t defend, then blame someone else.

      Let’s face it — the real culprit here is the Governor. This falls under his portfolio of responsibility. When you assign responsibility, you require accountability.    HE IS ULTIMATELY ACCOUNTABLE. Did he not at least ask questions? Now there is a loss in value for money — for his stupendous annual salary of some $250,000.

      What was he doing while all of this was going on? Twiddling his thumbs?  Or asleep with his feet up on the desk?  Another expose….?


  25. Anonymous says:

    oh no, it can’t be true can it? A UK citizen slagging off, incompetent to do his job. Isn’t that what Caymanians are usually accused to be doing. Who stole my role? Aren’t those highly qualified overseas professionals supposed to be the answer to everything? Isn’t that why Big Mac is considering to "relax" the immigration law, so we can entice more individuals like Bridger and his friends to come to Cayman to rape the Island?

  26. Anonymous says:

    I wonder how Jack is feeling seeing these pictures of his henchmen? Good Lord what was he thinking?

    As a Caymanian, I feel totally raped by these bastards. It is just criminal that all of this can just be swept under the carpet by the UK and we can do absolutely nothing about it.

    For the first time in my life, independence from Britain is sounding good to me.

  27. da wa ya get says:

    As much as this whole mess grieves my soul…I, for one, am happy that the real story has been picked up outside Cayman, and I’m happy that picture of that officer sleeping at his desk was included. Even though it’s been picked up by a tabloid…what do they say? "Where there’s smoke, there’s fire."

  28. Anonymous says:

    Here’s a thought the Daily Mail would probably pay for pictures of  Bridger if he is infact in Cayman –

     He was probably hoping no one would pick up on the piece in the Daily Mail in Cayman – I doubt he will be keeping a low profile  if he is here as he is obviously arrogant enough to return to Cayman after ripping everyone of .