Sentencing and confiscation delayed in fund theft case

| 24/08/2010

(CNS): As a result of what appears to be mountains of information served on his client, defence attorney Ben Tonner asked the court for an adjournment this morning when Robert Girvan appeared before Justice Charles Quin. Girvan had been scheduled to appear for a confiscation and sentencing hearing in the wake of his guilty pleas last month to 18 counts of theft and three of money laundering. Girvan, a Jamaican national, pleaded guilty to the crimes in connection with a number of local funds known as the Grand Island Funds, which collapsed in 2008, as well as a number of other financial institutions he was working for as a fund director and trader. The crown made an application for the confiscation on 18 August and served more than 22 exhibits on the defence the following day.

Tonner of Samson & McGrath, who is representing Girvan, said on Tuesday that there had been very little time to begin working through the bundles and understand the crown’s claim, having so recently received the material. He asked Justice Quin for an adjournment in order to begin examining the extensive, complex financial material and put together a response and work towards narrowing the issues.
 
As a result of the amount of material, the judge was sympathetic to Tonner and his client and with no objections from the crown the judge agreed to adjourn the sentencing and confiscation hearing to September.
 
Following the guilty pleas made on the 11 August by Girvan, Justice Quin had remanded  the former fund director in custody as a result of the certainty that he would be serving a substantial sentence, even if the recovery of some of the stolen money may gosome way to mitigating the length of the sentence. Girvan is accused of stealing around $19 million, though a large percentage of the money is said to be lost, as Girvan used the money in unauthorised trading.  
 
Justice Quin said at the time that Girvan was guilty of very serious offences, in which not only were huge amounts of money involved, causing significant losses to the third parties, but the crime struck at the very heart of the country’s financial services industry.
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