Lyndon Martin not guilty

By unanimous verdicts on Thursday afternoon, a Grand Court jury found Lyndon Martin not guilty of the two charges he had faced since March 2008.

Martin was charged with doing acts tending and intending to pervert the course of public justice by accusing Deputy Commissioner of Police Anthony Ennis of being in a corrupt relationship with Cayman Net News publisher Desmond Seales and giving him sensitive police material.

He was also charged with falsely accusing Mr. Ennis of the crime of misconduct in public office. This was a separate and alternative count.

In his directions to the jury, Justice Roy Anderson cautioned that the trial, which began on 1 September, had included numerous references to other matters.

‘It is not your role to pass judgment on the conduct of persons who were witnesses or on the foibles of persons who participated in Operation Tempura,’ he said.

Justice Anderson emphasised that intention was a necessary ingredient in the offence of making a false accusation. The prosecution had to prove that Martin knew his allegations were false when he made them, which was between 10 August and 21 September 2007.

That period includes Martin’s first conversation with Deputy Commissioner Rudolph Dixon, his further conversations with then-Commissioner Stuart Kernohan and Chief Superintendent John Jones, and his writing of two letters to the governor.

It also includes his witness statements to Special Constables Martin Bridger and Simon Ashwin, who were brought to the island from the Metropolitan Police in London to investigate the matter under the name Operation Tempura.

Trevor Burke QC, who defended Martin, told the jury before the first Prosecution witness was called that the only issue in the case was what Lyndon Martin genuinely believed.

Martin did not give evidence in the trial, but his interviews with police were read to the jury as part of the Crown’s case. The Defence called no evidence. Mr Burke was instructed by Attorney Ben Tonner.

Andrew Radcliffe conducted the case for the Crown, assisted by Crown Counsel Elisabeth Lees.