Election may delay Met audit

An audit of spending by the independent police team investigating alleged misconduct and corruption within the Royal Cayman Islands Police Service will likely not be released until after the islands’ 20 May elections.

How long after the elections largely depends on how long it takes the new government to get its house in order.

‘Some places take a few months to get together, that would be our concern,’ Auditor General Dan Duguay said.

By law, Mr. Duguay must present his reports to the Speaker of the House for review and dissemination to Legislative Assembly members before the documents are publicly released.

It’s possible that by the time the audit is complete, there won’t be anyone to give the report to.

As of Tuesday, 24 March, Speaker of the House Edna Moyle and her LA colleagues will no longer hold those positions since the dissolution of the house must occur before the May general elections.

Mr. Duguay said he expected a first draft of his audit to be finished toward the end of this week. He then plans to present it to the parties involved so they can issue a response.

‘That process usually takes a couple of months, but we’re shooting to have this thing done by the end of May,’ he said.

If a new Speaker is chosen by that time, the AG can present his report immediately. If it takes longer, he’ll have to wait.

In any case, Mr. Duguay said he intends to give everyone who has participated in the audit, including outgoing UK Metropolitan Police team commander Martin Bridger, a chance to respond before work on it is completed.

‘We’ve gotten good cooperation from everyone involved so far,’ he said.

The UK Met police team has been in Cayman since September 2007 looking into various allegations against senior members of the RCIPS and other police officers. Their work has led to the arrests of and criminal charges against a former Cayman Islands lawmaker and a deputy police commissioner.

According to figures released by the government, the Met investigators’ budget is now close to $4 million not including amounts spent on court and settlement costs for the team’s unlawful arrest of Grand Court Justice Alexander Henderson in September.

Governor Stuart Jack’s office, the UK Met Police force and the investigating team have refused to provide a specific breakdown as to how that money has been allocated.

Mr. Duguay’s audit seeks to provide at least a partial review of that spending, and whether it provided Cayman’s residents ‘value for money.’

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