Archive for January 30th, 2013

Police seek witnesses to car blaze

Police seek witnesses to car blaze

| 30/01/2013 | 2 Comments

IMG-20130130-00902 (244x300).jpg(CNS): Officers from the RCIPs are appealing to the public for information regarding a car fire in the early hours of Wednesday morning 30 January on the West Bay Road. Police received a report of the fire close to Seven Mile public beach. RCIPS and fire service officers attended and found a vehicle engulfed in flames. No one was in the car at the time and the blaze was extinguished by fire officers. “The circumstances surrounding the fire are unknown at this time,” said Inspector Everton Spence. “No other property was affected by the fire and the West Bay Police are investigating.”

Police are making an appeal to anyone who may have witnessed the incident or have any information which may assist in their enquiries. Please contact West Bay Police Station at 949 3999 or 649 3999 if you have information relating to this incident.

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Cops hunt escaped burglar

Cops hunt escaped burglar

| 30/01/2013 | 39 Comments

Pandohie Powell Jeff.jpg(CNS): The police are on the lookout for a suspected burglar who escaped from custody at Bodden town police station more than one week ago. The RCIPS has stated that an enquiry is now underway into how Jeff Pandohie Powell managed to escape. The 44-year-old man from Bodden Town, known locally as Jeff Pandohie, is suspected of  a burglary in the Savannah area on 11 January and was arrested in connection with that crime on 21 January. Following his arrest he escaped while being processed at the district station. Despite what the RCIPS described as “concerted efforts” by the police officers, who have carried out several operations in the area, Pandohie has not been found.

Officers hunting for him said he was last seen by a member of the public in Cumber Avenue, Bodden Town, yesterday afternoon (Tuesday 29 January), when it was reported that he was in possession of a knife. He is described as being approximately 5ft 9in in height, dark complexion and of slim build, weighing around 160lbs with low cut hair.

Acting Chief Inspector Brad Ebanks is urging anyone who knows of Pandohie’s current whereabouts not to approach him, but to contact the police immediately by calling 911.

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Schools qualify for football semi finals

Schools qualify for football semi finals

| 30/01/2013 | 0 Comments

pflplayoffs260113 26 (248x300).jpg(CUC-PFL): It was a mixture of happiness and heartache for some schools following the culmination of day four in the 2012/2013 CUC Primary Football League (PFL) this past Saturday at the Annex Field. Day four marked the final day of group play in the PFL Playoffs and for the top four finishers in each division, a chance to play in the semi-finals scheduled for next Saturday, February 2. In the Under 9 Consolation Cup, George Town Primary topped the group and secured the number one seed in the semis after demolishing Triple C 9-0; Truth For Youth finished second after losing to Bodden Town Primary 3-1, who finished third with the win and wrapping up the top four was Prospect Primary.

The semi finals will see George Town Primary play Prospect Primary and Truth For Youth face Bodden Town Primary (both games at 9:00 am).

In the Under 9 Champions Cup, undefeated South Sound Schools maintained their perfect record and at the same time secured the number one seed with a 1-1 draw with Savannah Primary. South Sound’s Lucas Carter opened the scoring for his school mates but Jawan Wray tied things up late in the game after equalizing for Savannah Primary. With the draw, Savannah Primary secured the number four spot.

In other action, Cayman Prep finished runners-up in the group after defeating Sir John A. Cumber Primary 3-1; St. Ignatius Prep secured third spot with a 3-1 victory over NorthEast Schools and Cayman International School ended their season on a high with a 2-0 defeat of Red Bay Primary thanks to goals from Oliver Johns in the 32nd minute and Jonathan Rado in the 40th minute.

In the Under 9 Champions Cup semi finals, South Sound Schools will play St. Ignatius Prep and Cayman Prep face Savannah Primary (both games at 10:00 am). In the Under 11 Consolation Cup, Savannah Primary secured the number one seed with a resounding 4-1 victory over South Sound Schools and Prospect Primary defeated Truth For Youth 4-1 to finish as the number two seed. Cayman International School and Truth For Youth round off the top four respectively.

In the semi finals, Savannah Primary will face Truth For Youth and Prospect Primary play Cayman International School (both games at 11:00 am). In the Under 11 Champions Cup, Cayman Prep completed the group stage of the Playoffs without dropping a single point and secured the number one seed with a 3-0 victory over St. Ignatius Prep.

David Pitcairn opened the scoring in the 26th minute after slotting home a penalty and added his second in the 55th minute. Strike partner Aaron Jarvis scored in the 33rd minute. Even with the loss, St. Ignatius Prep finished fourth in the group and secured aspot in the semi finals.

Red Bay Primary and Sir John A. Cumber Primary finished second and third in the group respectively after a hard-fought 1-1 draw. Sir John A. Cumber took the lead early in the second half after Barry Dre Tibbetts blasted an unstoppable drive past Red Bay’s Revaughn Johnson. Just when it seemed all was lost for the boys in maroon, Akili Talbert tapped in a late equalizer to share the points and send both teams into the semi finals.

In other games, 2011/2012 Under 11 Champions missed out on a spot in the semi finals by a single point after defeating NorthEast Schools 2-1 with Joshua O’Garro scoring both goals in the 9th and 40th minutes. NorthEast Schools had taken the lead in the 2nd minute thanks to an own goal off a George Town defender.

In a repeat of Saturday’s final group games, Cayman Prep will face St. Ignatius Prep and Red Bay Primary play Sir John A. Cumber Primary in the semi finals (both games at 12:30 pm).

Special thanks to Lovine “Pillo” Jovan and Dwayne Ebanks for assisting with officiating the day’s games and to the numerous recently qualified young referees and assistant referees who have gained some valuable experience in officiating in the PFL over the last few Saturdays.

Football fans are encouraged to head to the Annex Field this Saturday, February 2 to cheer on all the players as they vie for a spot in the finals and glory for their schools.


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Adapted flare gun gets man seven years

Adapted flare gun gets man seven years

| 30/01/2013 | 14 Comments

(CNS): Following his guilty plea last November, Seymour Patrick Ramsey (38) was sentenced to the mandatory minimum of seven years for the possession of an unlicensed firearm Tuesday.  Ramsay appeared before Justice Charles Quin in connection with an offence that occurred last July, when he was caught with an adapted flare gun. In his sentencing ruling Justice Quin said the defendant had made determined and persistent efforts to evade detection. When apprehended, Ramsay was verbally abusive and made deliberate attempts to prevent the police from recovering the gun. From the evidence put before him, the judge found that flare gun was still a firearm, and despite efforts by Ramsay's lawyer to avoid the mandatory minimum sentence, the judge stuck to seven years jail time.

“I cannot find any exceptional circumstances, either for the offence or the offender of this case,” Justice Quin said as he made his sentencing order.

Ramsay was apprehended after police were informed that a man was in possession of a firearm. Officers from the USG were dispatched to Welly’s Cool Spot for observation purposes. Once seen leaving the vicinity with two other people in a vehicle, the officers alerted Ramsay with their emergency lights. He made several attempts to evade the police, and to discard the firearm, the crown explained as they set out the details of the case for the court. But after being chased on-foot, the defendant fell and surrendered to the police and a modified flare gun, along with a small quantity of ganja, was recovered around the area. 

When handing down the sentence Justice Quin took into consideration Ramsay’s guilty plea as well as the fact that he has no history of firearms or violent offences and gave him the full discount.

During defense counsel submissions Guy Dilliway-Parr stated that the defendant was a middle aged man who is able to contribute to society. “He is no youngster embarking on a criminal career,” he added.

The lawyer said the defendant had been given the weapon by another person and out of curiosity he had tried to fire it at the beach, however; it did not work. Dilliway-Parry also submitted that there was no evidence to support that the defendant had any intent to engage in a criminal offence or any underlying criminality in this matter.

Defense counsel also argued that there were exceptional circumstances relating to the offence which justified not imposing the minimum sentence of seven years of incarceration. This included describing the weapon as a “contraption” and being in a very poor state of repair.

The firearm recovered by the police was an Orion Flare Gun with a chamber for a shotgun cartridge bolted on and after being tested by authorized firearms officer Anthony Stewart, it was recorded that the weapon did not fire any of the four 12-gauge shotgun cartridges it was found with. Officer Stewart suggested that it was old ammunition because after two attempts at placing new ammunition from the RCIPS armory into it the weapon fired. Stewart also suggested that the weapon fell within the definition of a lethal barreled weapon.

Nevertheless, Justice Quin found that the weapon was a firearm and the judge imposed the seven year minimum sentence with time spent in custody to be taken into consideration. In addition, Justice Quinn sentenced Ramsay to three months imprisonment to run concurrently with the seven year term for the ganja found in Ramsay’s possession during the incident.

The judge also commended the officers involved in the case who had recovered another illegal firearm from the islands’ streets, despite the efforts of the defendant to evade the police.

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Alex Alexander competition off to a flyer

Alex Alexander competition off to a flyer

| 30/01/2013 | 0 Comments

rugby jan13.jpg(CRFU): With a light sprinkling of rain and overcast conditions in South Sound local rugby fans and players alike could not have asked for better rugby playing weather for the opening round of the Alex Alexander Memorial Trophy competition, proudly sponsored by DART. The opening game, played at 2pm, normally sees both teams slog it out under stifling sunshine whilst the later 4pm game, still being played in the Caribbean heat often benefits from a quickly setting sun. The Century 21 Cayman Storm, looking to defend their 2012 league trophy victory took on the Queensgate Pigs Trotters in the early fixture. (Photo by Caroline Deegan)

The Trotters, who have not held the Alex Alexander Trophy since 2003 (and have also been unable to secure any other CRFU silver wear since 2007) have been seen as the local Journeyman team in recent years.

The Trotters, now coming of age, have welcomed the addition of new talent in the form of Neil Montgomery at scrum half, Alistair Lum at no. 8 and David Acut at 15, and are now undoubtedly a real force to be reckoned with on the pitch. The Cayman Storm on the other hand have always been known for a dangerous attacking backline spearheaded by scrum half Simon Crompton, Vanassio Tokotokovanua in the centres and Keswick Wright at fullback. But the absence of Tokotokovanua with injuries to both wrists and Wright, having opted for early retirement from XV’s rugby (mixed with the notable absences of Camilo Ramirez) put added pressure on returning Storm fly-half Josh Brown to rally his backline.

Neither team was in the ascendancy in the early exchanges and half time was wrung in at 15-15. Although there were chances for Marco du Plessis to draw first blood for the Pigs Trotters with kickable penalties his boot could not find its target as 6 points went begging. It was Claudio Sarfati who drew first blood and scored early on for the Storm but this was shortly followed by a converted Eoghan Ryan try to take the Score to 5-7. A penalty try to the Storm from a trip on Simon Crompton at the back of a Pigs Trotters Scrum allowed the Storm to momentarily regain the lead before Crompton fed the ball to Kieran Lyons when a chip and chase attempt by the Storm scrumhalf was easily picked off by Lyons who ran 50 yards up the field to score and make the scores 12-12. Brown and du Plessis exchanged further penalties end out the half. 

Whilst the Pigs Trotters started to open the scoring in the 2nd half the performance was anything but polished as the men in red are still looking to find their feet. Converted tries from James Waters and Alistair Lum plus 2 further Penalties secured by du Plessis brought up the final 35 points for the Pigs Trotters whilst a solitary Josh Brown penalty in the 2nd half were the only points the Storm could amass in the 2nd half.

In the later game the Advance Fire & Plumbing Buccaneers hosted the John Doak Architecture Iguanas. The Buccaneers, fielding a makeshift side without Paul Murphy, Michael Peck, Mariano Marco and Stephan Prior (who were instrumental in the Buccaneers Heineken Charity Shield win over the Century 21 Cayman Storm) due to a mixture of injury, or off island absences, struggled to contain an attacking Iguana backline under the tutelage of new Iguana coach Tim Rossiter.

The Iguanas tallied up a 25 point cushion through tries from Angel Hawkins, Yohann Regnard, Walter Myers and Andrew MacKay plus a further conversion and penalty kick from flyhalf Shaun Hardcastle before Buccaneer loose forward Shaun Gerrard secured 5 points for his team in the closing exchanges of the game. 

The Iguanas, thanks to a better point difference march to the top of the league standings with the Pigs Trotters in hot pursuit. The standings show a marked difference from the previous season with 2012 3rd and 4th placed teams  sitting in 1st and 2nd but with the Iguanas to host the Storm at 2pm this weekend followed by the Buccaneers hosting the Pigs Trotters it will be anyone’s guess to see how the teams will react after the week 1.

Whilst games are televised online on games can be watched (at no charge) in South Sound at the Cayman Rugby Football Club and spectators will not be disappointed with ample fast, hard hitting action!

Next games:
2 February 2013
2pm John Doak Architecture Iguanas (Home) vs. Century 21 Cayman Storm (Away)
4pm Advance Fire & Plumbing Buccaneers (Home) vs. Queensgate Pigs Trotters (Away)

Follow Cayman Rugby on Facebook and Twitter @caymanrugby

Photo above: Angelito Hawkins chips the ball forward before Saviriano Tabuaniwera can make the tackle

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Harbour House Cruiser Series 2013 kicks off Saturday

Harbour House Cruiser Series 2013 kicks off Saturday

| 30/01/2013 | 0 Comments

sailing jan13.jpg(CISC): The big sail boats will be in action for the first time this year in race 1 of the 8 race HHM Cruiser series. Last year saw the inaugural “Round the Sound” series and proved very popular, with 17 different boats coming out for what was billed as “fun racing with the emphasis on fun”. Clive Bodden’s Yahoo Yahoo took the trophy last year, sailing consistently in all six races. The series has now been expanded to eight races and everyone will be gunning for the big catamaran. Bruce Johnson’s Blue Runner, which came in second overall, has had his boat out of the water prepping it to do even better this year.

“The races are fun but the prizes from Harbour House are well worth giving it all you’ve got,” explained Bruce.

The cruiser series, which is a collaboration between the Sailing Club and Harbour House Marina, drew plenty of support in its first year.

“We hoped that running fairly short races with easy courses would allow for greater participation,” explained Rick Caley, manager of the sailing club. “No boats felt intimidated racing with the big guns and the spirit after racing was enhanced by some great Barbeques. We hope to attract even more boats to come out and join in the fun this year.”

Saturday 2 February sees the first race which will start at 1pm. Other upcoming race dates are 17 March, 21 April, 1 June and 28 July. 

If you are interested in participating or would like more information please contact

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Service club offers vocatoinal studies grant

Service club offers vocatoinal studies grant

| 30/01/2013 | 0 Comments

(CNS): Rotaract Blue is inviting applications for this year’s Fred Speirs Vocational Grant which is now in its fifth year. The grant provides young professionals from the Cayman Islands the opportunity to further their studies at home or abroad. The scholarship is open to applicants, between 16 and 30 years of age, who are enrolled or have been accepted into a local or overseas vocational/ technical skills course, above and supplemental to high school.  Rotaract Blue said it is very proud of its vocational grant programme which the only grant of this nature available locally.

“By bettering ourselves, we better our community; and as a club we are very excited about being able to assist persons pursuing vocational or technical courses again this year,” a spokesperson for the service club stated.

Interested parties must submit an application before the deadline of Friday March 29th and forms can be downloaded along with additional information regarding eligibility from the club's website –, under "Downloads" .

Completed applications, including all supplemental documentation, can be submitted via email – or by mail to: Rotaract Blue – Cayman Islands, P.O. Box 30245 KY1-1201, George Town, Grand Cayman, CAYMAN ISLANDS or they can be given to any Rotaract Blue club member.


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RCIPS opens nominations for top ‘amateur’ cops

RCIPS opens nominations for top ‘amateur’ cops

| 30/01/2013 | 4 Comments

hero.JPG(CNS): The RCIPS has begun preparations for this year’s Outstanding Service Awards and Police Commissioner David Baines is calling on people across the Cayman Islands to nominate their community heroes. The award is for anyone who has played an important role in keeping their neighbours, their communities and the Cayman Islands safe.  The award will be presented at the third annual RCIPS Outstanding Service Awards event at the Ritz-Carlton on Friday, 8 March. “This is your chance to recognise the people who go that extra mile to keep the Cayman Islands safe,” said Commissioner Baines. “Those everyday heroes who don’t look for any thanks or recognition.” 

The nominations are now being accepted for people or organisations that have made an outstanding contribution to community safety. The nomination form is available on the forms page of the RCIPS website and from all district police stations. The closing date for submission is Friday 8 February 2013. Forms should be submitted to district police stations or to the RCIPS HQ in George Town by 5.00pm on that date. They can also be e-mailed to

“The winner may be someone who has been instrumental in helping the police bring offenders to justice, or someone who gives up their free time to work with young people in the community to provide them with positive choices,” Baines explained. “The quality and the number of nominations in previous years has been outstanding. I’m sure that this year, once again, we will hear some greatstories about the many unsung heroes in our midst who deserve to be recognised for their selfless contributions.”

There will be a number of other awards presented on the night, including Police Officer of the Year, Support Staff Member of the Year, Diversity Award, Police Welfare Award and Special Constable of the Year.

The event will be completely underwritten by sponsorship and proceeds from the night will benefit the RCIPS Welfare Fund.

See details of last year’s winners

For further information about ticket sales or sponsorship opportunities please contact Pinnacle Publishing & Marketing on 345-945-6566.

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WSPA campaign presses on

WSPA campaign presses on

| 30/01/2013 | 47 Comments

turtle feeding.jpgCNS): Following the publication of an independent review conducted in December which confirmed a number of problems at the Cayman Turtle Farm that were first revealed publicly by the World Society for the Protection of Animals, a spokesperson for the charity said Tuesday that he believed the welfare of the turtles could still be improved at the farm. Although the WSPA, which is visiting Cayman this week, is pressing on with its campaign to see the CTF turned into a conservation facility, in the meantime it is encouraging the farm management, which has accepted that there are animal welfare problems to be addressed. In addition, the WSPA said the pressure had resulted in the farm taking some positive actions to at least begin addressing the issues.

Dr Neil D'Cruze, the WSPA campaign leader, said that the charity had enjoyed a positive meeting on Tuesday with representatives of the Turtle Farm and government and the officials had agreed to enter meaningful dialogue with WSPA as a way of addressing the turtle welfare problems, which they all acknowledge are real and present.

“There was an acceptance, not least from a senior representative of the CTF, that WSPA’s intervention in highlighting animal welfare problems was positive and has resulted in a recognition that things cannot stay as they are,” said D'Cruze. Recognising the steps the Turtle Farm has now begun to take, the charity said it was still very concerned about the handling of turtles, not just because of the health risk to visitors but the stress of the turtles, and the results of another scientific report were stilloutstanding.

“Our campaign goals remain the same,” D’Cruze said, explaining that the charity is a pragmatic, respected animal welfare organisation working with many stakeholders round the world. “We are always respectful of cultural practices and traditions, and firmly believe that progress can still be made to improve animal welfare while being respectful of these,” he added.

While the meeting was a positive one, it was apparent that there were still significant areas of disagreement as the CTF has stated very clearly that it will continue to act as a farm, selling the turtle meat, with conservation and research running parallel to supplying Cayman’s national dish.

The independent report released last week followed on from the damning findings that the WSPA published last year. Although the Farm had condemned the charity and accused it of making unfounded allegations and stirring up a negative campaign, a freedom ofinformation request revealed that in July of this year the Farm had invited an expert to examine conditions at the farm and he had found many similar issues to those revealed by WSPA, which he had reported back to the Farm’s management.

Like the WSPA report and the independent report in December, David Godfrey, Sea Turtle Conservancy Executive Director, found a significant proportion of turtles at the farm are suffering from a skin diseases and shell rot. Some turtles are suffering from other conditions such as “floating syndrome” as well as lesions of the head and eyes and flipper damage consistent with cannibalism.

The charity says it remains concerned that the farm management has been aware of animal suffering, overcrowding and disease for more than six months, yet repeatedly made public denials to the contrary.

The WSPA said that the farm had gone to “great lengths to keep hidden, identified problems akin to those published in WSPA’s investigation” and had continually sought to undermine the charity’s findings.  Yet there is now evidence from three different sources that a significant number of turtles have injuries consistent with severe overcrowding and that disease is a serious problem.

While the farm has billed itself as a conservation facility as well as a supplier of meat, it has not employed a professional vet at the facility. However, it has now begun the recruitment process for a full time animal doctor following the latest recommendations in the independent review. 

“The assessment of the Farm in July, and then again in December closely matches our own investigation, proving that the Farm knew our findings were true from the outset,” D’Cruze said. “Instead of taking us up on our offer to work with them to find a solution, they accused us of sensationalism.”

Although the Farm is beginning to acknowledge that there are issues regarding animal welfare and the WSPA is hopeful that there will be some positive change, until such a time as the farming stops and conservation begins in earnest there are still major concerns. While the latest report vindicated the WSPA’s findings, the worry now is that, as the recommendations to address the problem are not backed up with data, the welfare issues may persist and ultimately the entire concept of the CTF is still flawed.

“Very little attention has been paid to addressing the fundamental issue at stake – that green sea turtles are wild solitary animals that simply cannot adapt to life crammed into a Farm with 9000 other turtles,” D’Cruze added.

Meanwhile, as the WSPA continues in its efforts to persuade the Farm to move from a butcher’s shop to a full conservation facility, Humane Society International has also joined the campaign. :

Amanda Mayhew, Manager of Ecotourism & International Trade Policy at Humane Society International, said that as more and more travellers factor animal welfare concerns into their vacation plans, the Farm’s reputation will be key to its future success.

“By transitioning away from commercial production and improving the conditions for its resident turtles, the Cayman Turtle Farm would demonstrate its commitment to its conservation mandate, teach the public to value and respect these beautiful creatures, and set an example for sea turtle conservation worldwide,” she added.

HSI said it has encouraged its supporters from around the world to sign a petition which urges the Farm to improve conditions for the turtles in captivity. In just one week, the petition attracted over 20,000 signatures. These signatures will be added to WSPA’s petition – currently over 117,000 strong – before it’s delivered to the Cayman Turtle Farm on 1 February.

Vote in the CNS poll: What should government do with the Turtle Farm?

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