Ex-MLA asks for a chance

Former member of the Cayman Islands Legislative Assembly Lyndon Martin, who avoided a prison sentence last week and who is scheduled to face another criminal trial in August, is asking voters in Little Cayman and Cayman Brac to give him a chance.

Lyndon Marti

Former member of the Cayman Islands Legislative Assembly Lyndon Marti 

It is possible Mr. Martin could be sentenced to prison if convicted on charges of falsely accusing another person of a crime and doing an act tending and intended to pervert the course of public justice. His trial is scheduled for 31 August.

This leaves voters on the Sister Islands contemplating the election of a representative who might not be available to serve his full term.

‘I understand that concern,’ Mr. Martin said during an interview with the Caymanian Compass. ‘I can only address it that…everyone can see the nonsense behind this investigation and I will be cleared.’

‘Equally I pose, what happens if you don’t support me, but my name is cleared…is that fair to me? Is that fair to the overall island? Every candidate stands a chance of being convicted, stands a chance of having health problems…stands a chance of other things that would interrupt their term during office.’

The Cayman Islands Constitution automatically disqualifies anyone sentenced to more than 12 months in prison from serving in the Cayman Islands Legislative Assembly. Mr. Martin said that he would have to consider his options in the event of a conviction following the upcoming trial that carried a sentence of less than 12 months.

‘I would have to assess the situation at that time,’ he said. ‘If I thought anything that happened to me would bring disrespect to this community or any negative impact to this community, I would do the noble thing and resign.’

The August trial concerns allegations that Mr. Martin falsely accused Deputy Police Commissioner Anthony Ennis of providing confidential information to local newspaper publisher Desmond Seales. An independent team of investigators who reviewed Mr. Martin’s claims said his allegations were false.

In an entirely separate matter, Mr. Martin was convicted in April of three counts of obtaining property by deception. Last week, the Court of Appeal overturned one of those convictions and quashed the eight-month prison sentence that was originally ordered in the case.

The former MLA was instead ordered to perform 120 hours of community service.

‘At the moment, I have nothing that prohibits me from candidacy and nothing that prohibits me from delivering on my promises and commitments to the people of Cayman Brac and Little Cayman,’ he said.

Mr. Martin is not the only candidate in the upcoming election to have a minor brush up with the law relating to their previous government service.

Former government minister Frank McField was fined for two separate offences in 2006 that involved run-ins with Royal Cayman Islands Police officers, once during a traffic stop and a second time at a police roadblock. Mr. McField is running as a candidate for George Town on 20 May.

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