Joey comes clean over theft

| 24/01/2014

(CNS): In a surprise turnaround following his recent clams of innocence, Joey Ebanks has changed his pleas and has admitted to 17 counts of theft, forgery, fraud and deception relating to his time as the managing director of the Electricity Regulatory Authority. Between September 2012 and March 2013, he is said to have stolen around $100,000 from the authority, including spending more than $67,000 on iPads and iPhones. Ebanks, who stood as a political candidate in the North Side race as an independent in the 2013 election and as a PPM candidate in the 2009 election in the same district, had claimed the allegations were part of a conspiracy against him. Following a campaign protesting his innocence on Facebook for almost a year, Ebanks stood in the Grand Court dock Friday and came clean.

The June trial date that had been set relating to his previous not guilty pleas was vacated and a sentencing hearing fixed for 13 March. Defense attorney Ben Tonner requested a social enquiry report before the hearing and for his client's bail to continue. With no objections from the crown, Ebanks, who will be facing a custodial sentence, was bailed to return for sentencing.

Ebanks is also facing charges in Summary Court for theft and drug related offences. In addition, the police recently announced that Ebanks was under investigation relating to a solar panel project Ebanks attempted to launch while working at the ERA.

A former talk show host, Ebanks is no stranger to controversy. When he was the managing director of the Cayman Turtle Farm, he was at the centre of a controversial report by the Office of the Auditor General, as well as running up a significant bar bill and taking what appeared to be unauthorized salary advances of some $40,000. That cash was paid back, however, when he resigned in order to run for office with the PPM in 2009.


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  1. Anonymous says:

    Oh god, he is playing the God card.  It amazing how often in Cayman prayer and god seems to point to pleading guilty, but only after the accused has seen the evidence that will be used in court against them.  Makes me doubt the genuiness of the moment of conversion.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Now is the time for Joey to let his actions speak and not his mouth. Go to court, do your time and stay on the straight and narrow. Avoid too much attention and stay away from microphones.

  3. Anonymous says:
    I read other news stating that Joey comes clean because he have come to accept The Lord.
    Very good indeed. The angels rejoices when a soul is given upon The Lord.  The Lord accepts All. If we don't want to be judged then let us not judge one another.
    We don't know why Joey did what he did but he did. Sometimes we ALL does things and don't know why we done it. Some of us get caught and some of us don't. 
    I have known of Joey growing up but we are not friends to say but an acquaintance in the community.
    Today maybe your day to fall Joey but with the Almighty by your side today you rise. 
    Let's please stop being judgmental. Believe me when I say that your day will come when you fall, but instead of reading all the negative comments people post about you; you will smile and say a prayer for them. 
    We are ALL imperfect, who are you to judge anyone.
    Let come together and pray for each other. Because one day you are going to need us to pray for you.
    Joey, just pray. The power of prayer can move mountains. When you have nothing else to hold onto  just PRAY!!!!!
    • Anonymous says:

      I don't think the power of prayer moves mountains.  Plate tectonics and meteorological activity moves mountains.  Let's not confuse the children.

  4. Anonymous says:

    While I feel bad for what he has put his family through, he has done this to himself! He didn't have to be so public (facebook, talk show platform etc) to attack and blantanly lie regarding the accusations, when he knew all along he was guilty.  Yes, drug addiction can cause people to make poor choices, steal and lie. But Joey took it to a new level!!!! He was so arrogant during his political campaign, smearing the reputation of others whie he had been stealing from the public purse. He may now say it was all due to his drug addiction (looking pity, i guess)  but he also liked the "high" life with the flashing of $$, fancy suits, boat etc.  Joey you did the crime so now its me to man-up an do e time. Hopefully you will learn yor lesson, straighten up your life and make restitution of all funds taken

    • Anonymous says:

      Funny how Only when we are in Deep Doo Doo that we tend to find the Lord. Joey has been a closet Hitter (Coke head) for over 20 years..The only reason he came clean is because "what is done in the dark will eventually come to light". I think that he could use a good 10 yr sentence to think about the things that he has done. Hopefully, he doesn't continue to Free Base while @ Northward.

  5. Anonymous says:

    It seemed to me from the outset Mr. Ebanks wasn't very bright and I think he was taken advantage of because of it. That's sad, but what should concern us is how he got into positions of trust and responsibility. How was it decided he was qualified to be a manager?  Who within government bureaucracy promoted him with his apparent limited capabilities? Not once, but several times. The last being when he was already under suspicion having him now plead guilty isn't an answer to that.

  6. Anonymous says:

    "Now that I have seen the evidence that shows that the prosecution has a cast iron case against me and my lawyers have told me I am definitely not going to get away with it, I have decided to do the right thing and change my plea."

  7. Anonymous says:

    The one positive thing here is that he has finally admitted to his wrongdoing. Now he will face well-deserved punishment and begin the rehabilitation process. Wishing Joey and his family all the best for the future.

  8. Anonymous says:

    I feel very sad for Mr. Ebanks and his family. I am also left with the nagging feeling that some form of substance abuse or mental illness must have been at the centre of this fiasco. 

    Mr. Ebanks should immediately issue a public apology to the people that were hurt by his actions and to the people that supported him on the basis that he was once a person of high standards and integrity. He should then seek immediate help for any substance abuse issues and do whatever else is necessary to protect his family and restore his credibility.

    While I don'tknow Mr. Ebanks personally I feel that he is essentially a good person who lost his way at some point mostly as a result of substance abuse. He still has the ability to do great things for himself and for the people of the Cayman Islands and I wish him only the best.

    • Anonymous says:

      With all the comments about substance abuse, sounds like you know him very well

  9. Anonymous says:

    We may all laugh and poke fun at Joey for his fall from grace.  Imagine just a few years ago he was considered MAN OF THE YEAR here in Cayman.  What a fall.

    I think we need to just watch and see how this unfolds. I think there is more to this than we know as to why he turned his plea around.  XXXX

    • Anonymous says:

      Like "National Heroes", "Man of the Year" is a relative concept.

      • Anonymous says:

        Since Man of the Year was a Desmond Seales initiative, the concept was relative to Desmond's wallet: Joey was the MD of the Turtle Farm, the Turtle Farm was a big client of Desmond's PR company and VOILA! Man of the Year.

        • Anonymous says:

          Yes, and Joey was Man of the Year the year after Alden. I wonder what kind of sweet government deal Desmond got for that!

    • Anonymous says:

      Are you suggesting that Joey has made a deal to avoid prison time by telling about others who are dirty?

  10. annon says:

    Joey, you've still got my vote

  11. Anonymous says:

    The real question ,"Will Joey see the inside of Northward?"

  12. Anonymous says:

    I know Joey's wife and her family well and I do not believe she was aware of what was happening.  She is a gentle young woman who was helping and when she married Joey, he was not like he has turned out to be.  Yolanda, my family and I have you in our prayers throughout this time of trials and tribulations and we pray for you and youe children.  Stand tall.

  13. Anonymous says:

    He wished he could have run with PPM in 2013. His reputation had long preceded him. When PPM got their eyes open to his content they acted promptly and with the correct action

  14. Anonymous says:

    Jail ?

  15. Anonymous says:

    Well….I will say that he has got talent….he a blog or something as I was most delighted when he set some speech from a charlie chaplin movie to jurasic park theme song and tried to insight a populist grass roots movement to uprise against the policet. That radio show was the boss of comedy.. It was a crazy Cayman and more specifically Cayman politics. Thankfully the voters acted with sense and the world is getting sane again. Well the sky is not falling anymore but it was worth a shot #create a revolution#men with machine minds#yolo# we think too much and feel to little…

    Joey you have a great imagination and I hope you can apply it honestly…I look forward to your future social media show or talk show…#we love u

    Oh I a live radio talk show from prison…..give us a run down of what takes place inside the walls…im waiting for the book..keep the faith your so crazy that I cant help but admire your foolishness. I got my tax money that you stole back in comical relief and so I consider yourdebt paid but you got 49,999 others and some are a tough crowd it appears

  16. Anonymous says:

    I do hope Joey's family encourages him to get some professional help for his drug  addiction.

  17. Anonymous says:

    $67,000.00 on ipads and iphones!!!  Willsome of those people who got an ipad or iphone please stand up??

    Those who partied and drank free drinks and ate free food please stand up!!


    • Anonymous says:

      …. And those that profited from selling him $67,000 in I pads. Hello

    • Anonymous says:

      Check out another statutory educational organization.

    • Anonymous says:

      Rumor has it he was selling those to support his alleged drug habit.

    • Anonymous says:

      Will those who got an ipad please stand up? Please stand up? Please stand up? LOL

  18. Anonymous says:

    More local dishonesty.

    • Anonymous!!@##!! says:

      Cayman isn't the only place that this type of behaviour is found. It irates me when some of you write here that its local, yet we see that some of you people from other countries are doing this daily. Im just sorry that my people get caught up in it, but when you see the other nationality's that do similar crimes they are almost applauded for their behaviour. My,My,My..

      • Anonymous says:

        True, but more and more the people getting caught are the 'man of the year', national hero, politico type which makes it even more news worthy.

        The others, yes they are just as bad but did not protest with 'clean hands' whilst emitting xenophobic and entitled rants at all and sundry.

        I will sit back and pour another gin and tonic and let 'sh.t show' unfold.

        • Anonymous says:

          Still more to come.

          People are throwing others before the horse and cart now to save themselves or get a little h'ep with the jail time!

          By July, CNS will be taking more staff on and going 24/7!

  19. Anonymous says:

    What is even more surprising is how many still supported him…and continued to provide positions of power and authority! Supporters in both political parties eh!

    There's a very long way to go to effect any real positive change in the culture we now have in Cayman (and elsewhere) of greed and of a sense of being untouchable!

  20. Anonymous says:

    Let's hope he is also man enough to apologise to the authorities (Police, Governor etc) that he publicly accused of fabricating evidence and conspiring against him.  He accused them of serious crimes, an apology would be in order.

  21. Anonymous says:

    Is anyone else getting tired of this site being used to write stupid comments instead of sticking to the subject in question, can we stick to constructive critism or why you are upset, some times this site gets a little too high school bullyish behavior.

    • Anonymous says:

      This is the tip of a big iceberg and people feel like commenting on more than the six months of systematic theft covered by this guilty plea.

    • Anonymous says:

      No, I could pretty much keep going for a few more months yet.

  22. My Gosh says:

    All I can say is this is the man Mackeeva backed against Ezzard, I see a trend developing!



    • Anonymous says:

      What are you talking about?  Joey ran for the PPM against Ezzard inNorth Side. The UPD didn't have a horse in the race. Stop spreading lies.

      • Anonymous!!@##!! says:

        Sorry 14:46  he ran in 2009 with the PPM and in 2013 wth the UDP  , he lotboth times cause e re smarter than the average bear out there. Tha's not spreaing lies , that's a fact

        • Anonymous says:

          Wrong. He ran as an independent in 2013. I guess you're not smarter than the average bear.

          • I didnt say says:

            I didnt say he ran with UDP I said Mac backed him against Ezzard. Are you that naive to think that all the UDP financed candidates were party members?

        • Anonymous says:

          The time you all spend posting stupid comments on this site, you all could be doing  something constructive.  We have many elderly that would love to have someone to just sit and talk with them for just an hour, many of our youth that could do with some love and have good role models to look up to.  Come on people do something constructive and stop wasting your time passing negative remarks.  You all would feel alot better at the end of the day if you did something worthwhite with your lives.  I rarely come on this site…this is the first time that I have posted anything and will surely be my last.  I spend a lot of my time in the community, assisting our youth and elderly, other volunteer work and I could go on and on.  Peeps…stop the negativity and be POSITIVE!  Try it…you might like it!

    • Anonymous!!@##!! says:

      Amen, no matter how arrogant Ezzard is, we are better off than with this guy , the shenannigains he committed is absurd, north siders  is'nt  as stupid as he thinks we are.the people that lifted him up, is pathetic just like him. I saw through his veil a long, long time ago. So "I'm not afraid man"  who ya gonna call now.

  23. Anonymou says:

    Hopefully this will be a turning point for Joey to return to the straight and narrow.

  24. Knot S Smart says:

    What is that saying again?

    Oh yes…

    Came out like a lion and went in like a lamb…

  25. Anonymous says:

    What about the $2.00 per car tire disposal fee we and every car dealer on the island

    pays for new tires…………..where did that money go?? Ask Joees bros.

    It appears the CIG is not using the fee to "dispse of the tires",Alister……Alister…Alister??????

    Why are so many car tires not being disposed of properly…………….fees………..not applied.

    Burn'em, no one will notice…………………

    for more information or to comment log on to:


    The Troll

  26. Anonymous says:

    Joey, now that you have "fessed up", please pay your bar tab at Boswains Beach. Then the government would be able to balance its books.

  27. Anonymous says:

    I'm very disappointed, especially because he so vehemently denied the charges.  I also feel sad for his family as they go through what must be a terrible ordeal.

    • Anonymous says:

      Well at least he came clean in the end – which is more than I can say of certain other officials.

  28. Anonymous says:

    This is actually very sad and shows how drugs can destroy a person. I knew Joey back in his days at CUC and I really thought he was friendly, helpful and a good guy.  I saw him a few years later and his personality had changed dramatically. I could hardly believe it. I didn't think he was on drugs at the time, but knowing what we now know, it's probable he was. And this was before his being at the Turtle Farm, running with the PPM in 2009 and all this stuff at the ERA. I feel very bad for his family and actually for him. Such a shame.

    • Charlie says:

      Cocaine is a helluva drug I tell ya. One line at a time, sweet Jesus.

  29. Anonymous says:

    Am not afraid!  Hehe am not!

  30. Anonymous says:

    What a way Caymanians like to see one of their own destroyed. You are all only innocent until proven guilty. He is already going through enough, you dont need to make it any harder for him, remember everyone of us has glass houses and children and family. He couldnt have been all bad or PPM wouldnt have taken him on board when they did. Lets pray for him and his family whom Im sure is suffering and wait on our turn. Remember God is forgiving and he sees how you all are rejoicing.

    • Anonymous says:

      He stole from everyone of us and tried to hide it by attacking others and insinuating they were actually guilty of a smear campaign for their own nefarious reasons.   You and God can forgive him but I'm going wait for a little sincere repentence of the crimes and not merely the disclosure of the crimes…..not holding my breath. He destroyed himself.

    • The Deacon says:

      Brother Anonymous, when you say "one of our own" do you mean we are all drug users and thieves? 

      God may forgive him, but I do not!

    • Anonymous says:

      Leave Brittany alone! Waaaaa

    • Anonymous says:

      It's always shocked me that Caymanians hold such deep-rooted resentment toward each other, especially when it comes to social class.  Some will go on and on with pro-Caymanian/anti-expat dogma, but then they take absolute glee in seeing one of their own fall. The conclusion I've come to after 20 years here is that it's not really about "what's in it for us". It's all about "What's in it for me." Watching the way the past four or five cycles of elected politicians behave makes that quite apparent.

      • Anonymous says:

        13:23 You couldnt have said it any better. As a Caymanian I have learnt during my 60 yrs that it is a DOG EAT DOG life in Caymanian.


    • Diogenes says:

      Innocent until confessed in this case.

  31. Coconutz says:

    The headline ought to have read: "Joey comes off dirty after theft!"

  32. Coconutz says:

    No worries folks, in a few months he will have found God and God will have saved him.  A few months later he will have found a high-level job in government.  And in just a few more months after he will have been made into a national hero for unselfish service rendered to the Caymanian people.

    Co co co Coconutz Co co co Coconutz

  33. Anonymous says:

    What a loser.

  34. Anonymous says:

    Joey… where is your facebook page – we all wanna hear what you have to say!!

  35. Just Sayin' says:

    One down, hundreds more to go….

  36. Anonymous says:

      Not going to kick anyone when they are down and glad he came clean.  Hope he gets help and now… time to move on to the Big Stinker 🙂

  37. Anonymous says:

    Like we used to say in the Bathhouse… "Who's next?"

  38. Anonymous says:

    Joey is the tip of the iceberg.

  39. Anonymous says:

    As a friend of Joey's I understand why he has admitted guilt and I stand by his decision.  As a friend while it is hurtful to see this being the outcome, his decision is to be applauded.   In Cayman people are always ready to condemn and destroy but yet the Bible that we all claim we are so fond of, says that he who is without sin, cast the first stone.   Guilty or not Joey, while I do not condone any of the wrongs that you committed, I will remain your friend and I will keep praying for you and your family.  Your family I pray will be strong and I hope that the public gives them the respect they deserve and those who claim to be their friends will now hold them up.  I leave it in God's hands and I pray that those hateful emails and posts will stop as we all have something in our lives that should it be known would embarrass us.  So accept his decision and let him and his family live in peace.

    Takes a big man to come clean!  


    • Anonymous says:

      Not really. Caught redhanded.

    • Anonymous says:

      Takes a real scumbag to keep lying and denying for months and months, only to cave when he sees the extent of the evidence against him. It's tactical,as he'll still get an allowance for a guilty plea.

      • The Seeker says:

        The sole and lonely usage of the epitaph scumbag shows that your comments ate personal and definitely worthy of your obfuscated mentality.

        • Anonymous says:

          No, objectively most people would call anyone who behaved that cyncially a scumbag, whether it is this case or say a politician who denie a DUI and then sees the light months later.

        • anonymous says:

          Sole and lonely….??? Well that's Joey in Northward soon let's hope. I submit that the use of the term "scumbag" is 100% appropriate in this instance, and the only thing "obfuscated" (if you really must use the word) is your post itself, which is borderline unintelligible.

  40. Foreign Devil says:

    Good on yer Joey, do your time get off the pipe, when you come out I am sure someone will give you a break, you are a talented man and you cano start again. Write a book in Jail!

  41. Anonymous says:

    I thought he said he was innocent & he would prove it, I think he thought ” his hands are clean & his heart is pure” lmao gt

  42. Anonymous says:

    Nothing more than a plea deal..I wonder what they actually had on him.

  43. Anonymous says:

    The person who appointed him to the ERA after what he did at the Turtle Farm should also be put away.

  44. Anonymous says:

    Please remember that this mans family is going through a incredibly hard time as well. If it was anyone he fooled best, it would be them.

    Thank you.

    • Anonymous says:

      You think WE should remember that?? HE should have remembered his family whie he was committing these crimes.

    • Anonymous says:

      I'm not afraid to take a stand everybody come take my hand. We'll walk this road together, through the storm whatever weather cold or warm just let you know that you're not alone Holla if you feel like you've been down the same road.


      It's about to get real Jojo!

    • Anonymous says:

      Yeah, but if he wasnt so arrogant in denying everything for years, people might have less of a reaction.  

      He decided to do this.   Once he has completed his likely prison sentence, hopefully he will turn around his ongoing greed and put this energy to being just a persistent in volunteering to help the community.  

    • Just a Simple Caymanian says:

      Its is most unfortunate that Joey skrewed up like this once a promissing young man. I don't wish bad on no one , its a disgrace that this happen but he is now down and possibly out and will go to jail because of a sickness or greed. His family will  no doubt suffer more than he does over this.

      May God be with the family

      • Anonymous says:

        So, werre the iPads and iPhones all used as vote catching "gifts".  Fess up Joey.


        • Anonymous says:

          I think that works out to about 100  or so Iphones or Ipads, take your pick.  Not alot of votes to be bought there.

          Just sayin.

    • Anonymous says:

      Yeah, not really sure about how fooled they really were…  Selectively blind at best – aware of everything at worst.

    • Anonymous says:

      I agree, This has NOTHING to do with his children, or his wife if she was unaware of what was happening.

  45. Anonymous says:

    go for a ligher sentence and give names of the rest of the crooks you know about!

    • Hancock says:

      Was he a member of any Service Club?

    • Anonymous says:

      or sentence him to many years behind bars to send a clear and loud message to all cs employees that public purse theft is not tolerated whatsoever.

    • Anonymous says:

      maybe he cut a deal for other information????

    • Anonymous says:

      Name names? Nope, not gonna happen. If he names names he will disappear over a reef.

  46. Big Whopper says:

    Good to know where that ERA fee on the CUC bill went……

  47. Anonymous says:

    Joey Joey Joey. What did you think was going to happen.  He has finally manned up.  But, following the Auditor's latest revelations and yet another case of embezzlement there has now to be a question asked.  Does a government's attitude toward managing..or not managing as the case may be..the public's finances..set a tone?  Most people, out of neccessity, handle their finances much differently than what they regularly witness their government doing. This isn't news but there are those who might see a lack of accounting and accountability on government's part as an example of what they might be able to get away with if the temptation exists, and the money is there. That is to say, the degree to which a government appears to be honest, and accountable, is an important part of how a society operates.  In my opinion it does set a tone, and if there is an apparent lacking in this department then people like Joey XXXX will continue to appear before us.

    • Anonymous says:

      Certain people remain 'untouchable' as long as their political masters remain untouchable…and are allowed to continue unhindered…and given more opportunities.

      From disgrace at the Turtle Farm to…another position of authority and opportunity to steal and embezzle public funds.

      Certainly, those higher up the chain of command are responsible, as much as Joey Ebanks is.

      Will the public ever know exactly how much, over how many years, he's robbed from them ?

      Probably not.

      Reflect on your life while in prison…and change your ways, young man !

  48. KY1 says:

    Hmmmm … sounds like the fabricated evidence is too strong?

  49. B. B. L. Brown says:

    Was there ever any doubt?

    • Anon says:

      Yes, believe it or not there was.  Are you forgeting that some 130 people vote for him in north side?

    • Anonymous says:

      Only that he might get away with it.  This is the Cayman islands still.

  50. Anonymous says:

    Is he going to say where the iPads and iPhones went so that the ERA can recover them?

  51. Anonymous says:

    Bye bye Joey… Will miss your Facebook rants. 

    • Anonymous says:

      Is he still on Facebook? I can't find him anymore or maybe he unfriended me cuz I only friend requested him to catch news.

    • SSM345 says:

      12:34, he can still post to Facebook from Northward, we all know that.

  52. Anonymous says:

    Now, if the bigger one would come clean.

    • SSM345 says:

      Dem guys (many more to come) are so durty dey like dat Iranian man who nah bathed fah 40+yrs, you cyan't clean off all dat kaka-doo-doo.

  53. Anonymous says:

    This guy is scum

    • Anonymous says:

      And you are perfect?

    • Anonymous says:

      Joey is very wrong for stealing and should pay the price for his crime. He admitted to stealing so for those charges it should be clear cut . On the others he is being accused off…he has not he is innocent unless they can prove he is guilty, even if you, I or many of the general public believe he is.  

      None of us are perfect, and while you, I or the other person might not steal or do drugs… or make the same types of mistakes he made; we all have other flaws even if  it may not invlove breaking the law.

      Their is another saying, this is aside from the saying, "Let he without sin cast the first stone".  The saying is,"Every saint has a past and every sinner has a future".

      I am happy that he had the gumption to come forward and admit his guilt, even if he at first denied it and went on about this and that. Does not mean some of what he was saying is not factual.

      Not many would admit to guilt. Let us hope he learns from this experience, and get the help he needs to turn his life around.

      After he has paid the price, surely he like everyone else deserves a second chance. At least, the opportunity to be "the sinner with a future". I am certain we all, can recall many "saints with a past". Let him earn it.

      My prayers go out to his family…this must be an extremely difficult time for them all. 





  54. Anonymous says:

    God again?

  55. Cheese Face says:

    Good Boy Joey, glad you have finally admitted what everyone already knew. I hope you get some help as you obviously need it!