Fraudster steals over $850K

| 15/10/2012

(CNS): A Cayman based insurance manager has admitted stealing over US$856,000 from an insurance firm and its clients. David Self pleaded guilty to two counts of theft and one count of possession of criminal property on Friday morning in the Grand Court.  Self had originally faced some 18 counts of theft and fraud relating to almost US$1 million but after negotiations with the crown the indictment was changed to roll the charges together. Self was remanded in custody to HMP Northward ahead of his sentencing hearing, which is scheduled for 30 November. According to a civil claim in the Grand Court, Self’s fraud resulted in the collapse of Monkton Insurance, which was registered in Cayman in 1997 and regulated by CIMA.

The theft took place throughout 2011 and Self (53) was arrested in February this year. Then in April liquidators filed a petition in the Grand Court to wind up the business, described as “hopelessly insolvent” as a result of the misappropriation of funds. Since then, Self has also been served with several suits in an effort to recover the cash from related firms.

Self has admitted stealing $856,000 from Warco Insurance, one of two claimants.

In June the local Insurance Managers Association had claimed the crime was exposed because of the local regulatory system. IMAC said that while news of the crime was not welcome, it illustrated that the regulatory environment had performed in exactly the way it should and had brought the alleged fraud to the attention of the authorities.

However, the court heard Friday that Self had perpetuated the fraud over a twelve month period before the crime was exposed.

Related articles on CNS Business: 

Fraud suspect faces law suits

IMAC system exposed fraud

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Category: Crime

Comments (34)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    This is a scary trend. two expats in a short white involved in white collar crimes involving large sums of money?? I wonder what will be next?

    • Anonymous says:

      Oh no, are the rules starting to apply to everyone? Immigration fraud is not real fraud, right?

  2. SKEPTICAL says:

    As this event appears to have occurred over only a 12 month period when normal audit checks might not yet have applied, perhaps CIMA should demand that, in addition to the periodic statutory and regulatory returns required of insurance companies, they (CIMA) should also obtain direct from Third Parties, hard copy confirmations of all “cash” and “asset” account balances.

  3. Anonymous says:

    It's losers like this that gives Cayman its image, you've all seen these rubbish TV shows like CSI and NCIS, they all make reference to "the transfer of funds to Cayman".

    From what I've seen we have some very good corporate governance laws here including Anti-Money laundering regs and Proceeds of Crime Act – the problem being threefold:

    a) nobody understands them or pays any intention as long as they're earning cash;

    b) I'm not actually sure what happens when you submit a SARS report to the authority as it seems to disappear and nothing gets done about it; and

    c) greed

    Until b) above is rectified then unfortunately this kind of scandal won't be stopped.  Lets get tough with these scumbags, unless there's some form of punishment that will stop and make these fraudsters think twice before ruining other peoples' lives they will continue to do it.  Lets try and fabricate some kind of "corporate murder" charges and punish these guys with the death penalty they'll think twice then.

  4. Dum Diddy Dum says:

    Does anyone else see the irony of the guy doing something so selfish and having the last name, Self? Sadly funny.

  5. SKEPTICAL says:

    The underlying damage in cases like this, and HSBC, and miriad other cases , is that it provides more ammunition to those who suggest that Cayman is still the “Wild West” financial centre that it was in the 70’s.

    • Anonymous says:

      It is also amaizing how short memories are. What happens here is miniscule compared to other places..how can programmes mentioned in another post here refer to Cayman, when the biggest rogues in the world were Enron, Goldman Sachs, AIG (chartis), General Motors, Freddy Mac and Fanny Mae loan institutions and others which actually started this recession and the US tax payer will be paying for over many a year to come. Did any of those goe to jail? I cannot remember..However Cayman is small and can be picked on..why the hell dont the politicos stand up every time we hear this and rant back about the other scandals in other places?? Maybe they are afraid the US and others know more about their scheming that the RCIPS seem too?

  6. Anonymous says:

    So Anonymous 8:59…?

    Are you saying that our elected leaders have serviced their own needs by virtue of their position and would therefore qualify as "corrupt"?

    Sadly, if this is your stance, I would have to agree with you.

  7. Anonymous says:

    I bet with a crime of this gravity and with "Self" having been in custody from earlier this year, he'll get maybe another 18 – 24 months in custody and very little of the stolen money would have been recovered. Once he does this time, he will then be deported by Immigration to where-ever he came from.

    Expect, that he will be sipping "Pina Colada's and Margarita's" somewhere in Mexico with the stolen money and saying to himself,  " You know, Northward wasn't that bad at all……….. especially with all those Caymanian "heavy cakes" that we were served on weekend's, it made my stay very interesting in the Cayman Islands. !!!!     

  8. Gordon Barlow says:

    It seems to me that the regulatory system failed miserably. Why am I not surprised?

    • Anonymous says:

      There is a difference between the regulartory system and proper company internal controls and management. Those are what failed.

  9. Whodatis says:

    Re:

    "However, at least he stood up and took the rap for his crimes, saving the prosecutors and courts time and money. In one way, a redeeming gesture after a bad crime."

    Say what?!

    (Yes, surely a respect for public expenses and doing the right thing was paramount in his decision to plead guilty – after all, he is only guilty of stealing almost a million freakin' dollars!!)

    "Some of our politicians should take note. It gets to something when a confessed criminal is showing them how to behave."

    Are you serious?!

    My goodness, you (and your supporters) have absolutely no shame.

    Had this been a Caymanian convicted of these crimes this comment page would be ablaze with criticism of every cat, dog and mosquito of local ancestry.

    Then again, Cayman needs each and every professional expatriate, right? They should all be considered "key employees" as well.

    After all, even when they steal millions of dollars some folks still manage to find a way to garnish them with ringing endorsements and prop them up as examples for Caymanians to live up to.

    Amazing.

    (Yet the mantra is that Caymanians have a sense of entitlement.)

    Regardless of race, nationality, educational background, socioeconomic standing … the man is a friggin' THIEF – end of.

    I place David Self in the same category as any armed robber in Cayman today.

    • Anonymous says:

      You are absolutely right, Whodatis. Witness also the others who are trying to pawn of the blame on to CIMA. The expat hypocrisy on here is simply staggering.

    • Like It Is says:

      "I place David Self in the same category as any armed robber in Cayman today."  Except he did not use a gun.  So he is nothing like an armed robber, being armed being a central part of the whole armed robber thing.

      • Anonymous says:

        With some respect Whodatis was not saying D.S. 'is' a robber, if you are so versed in analysis you should have noticed he stated the same 'category' i.e. the similarity and level of criminal element.

         

        Also, blaming CIMA for what should first be addressed by managers and internal auditors, who're very likely expat workers too. Let's be real people, we know if it was a Caymanian orJamaican, this blog & headlines would be different!

    • Anonymous says:

      Actually, if it were a Caymanian who committed this fraud the board would be filled with comments from Caymanians blaming expats for what said Caymanian had done. It's better you say had this person been a "J'can" for example; we'd see about 2000 comments asking for his blood. While demanding his blood, he would also get blamed for currupting the innocent Caymanian youth.

       

      Signed,

       

      Born Caymanian

      • Anonymous says:

        Actually we had a much bigger fraudster who was Jamaican and we didn't see 2000 comments asking for his blood or blaming him for corrupting Caymanian youth.  

        http://centos6-httpd22-php56-mysql55.installer.magneticone.com/o_belozerov/31115drupal622/headline-news/2010/08/11/fund-director-stole-19m?page=1

        What is it with some Caymanians that they feel the need to deride their own people even when it is false?  Is it to win acceptance from expats? 

         

        • Whodatis says:

          That is exactly what it is, poster.

          What they fail to realize is that nobody respects a kiss-ass. They simply become stepping-stones for others.

        • Anonymous says:

          Obviously 2000 comments was sarcasm…this is not the expat tax we're talking about which was the only subject to overwhelm the board with comments.

          • Anonymous says:

            "Sarcasm"? So you actually meant the opposite – that there would be 2000 comments saying how the Jamaican should be congratulated and what a great example he had set for our youth? lol.

            If you meant "hyperbole" then it was not simply exaggeration, it was false. There were no such comments.   

    • Anonymous says:

      Does a troll's opinion count?

    • Anonymous says:

      WHodatis, you introduced the ex-pat and Cayman thing, not I.  Show mewhere I mentioned it???Trying to stir the sh!t again?

      Point of reference, I am frequently the one writing about prejudice comments from expats. I am an expat and cannot stand prejudice from anyone, local or foreign. I would have written the same had it been a Caymanian.

      Your final two paragraphs are the only ones that really make sense, the rest is a rant about nothing I said, you must be feeling sensitive today.

    • Anonymous says:

      It is odd you take this approach but it does highlight an issue rarely mentioned in Cayman.  That issue is how much more likely it is for a Caymanian to plead "not guilty" and want a trial than non-Caymanians and then after trial to seek to appeal a conviction.  There is a marked difference when the prospects of conviction are similar.  There is a significantly higher proportion than anywhere else I have worked, even in hopeless cases.  I always wonder why.  Part of me thinks it is the jury pool and selection process is so flawed and from such a narrow base.  But that would not account for the lack of guilty pleas in non-jury cases in which there also appears to be a significant discrepancy.  I sometimes think there is an attitude of "I'll get away with it". I really think the tarrif for an early plea needs to be looked at more closely. 

  10. Anon says:

    My question is: what went wrong with the CIMA regulation of this operation? Why did they not see these issues? What happened with the auditors? Where are they? What happened with their supposed audit of this firm? Yes, the fraudster did wrong, but the regulatory oversight seems to have failed to spot it, or prevent it. That is what concerns me.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Obviously any crime is heinous, and I hope there were no "innocent" victims, ie policy holders involved in the meltdown.

    However, at least he stood up and took the rap for his crimes, saving the prosecutors and courts time and money. In one way, a redeeming gesture after a bad crime.

     

    Some of our politicians should take note. It gets to something when a confessed criminal is showing them how to behave.

    • Anonymous says:

      No congratulations are in order here. White collar crime should be treated as seriously as blue collar crime. Admitting your guilt when the evidence is overwhelming does not by means "redeem" you. 

      • Anonymous says:

        No congratulations were given. I wonder why some people read more that is there.

        • Anonymous says:

          You congratulated him for standing up and taking the rap and commended him as an example to be followed by our politicians. You said that admitting his guilt (somehow) redeemed him. Is that clear enough for you?

          • Anonymous says:

            I did not congratulate him, it is something anyone in that position ought to do anyway, so nothing to congratulate. The point was, it is rare to see that here, and the politicians hide behind "nation buidling funds" and dodgy contracts in America rather than actually admit what they get up to, or for that matter, face any criminal charges.

            • Anonymous says:

              Don't worry anon Tue, 10/16/2012 – 08:59. I understand that you were jsut being sarcastic.  Don't feel bad, I have the same problem: people always misunderstand what I'm trying to say.

    • Anonymous says:

      Come on, there is nothing good to come out of this or no good example to follow.  Leave the politicians out of this one as it relates to stealing.  They have enough wrongdoing to be accountable for.