At issue was whether he knew the bills were fake
A man accused of passing
counterfeit money, and who claimed he had been duped by a fisherman, was found
not guilty by a Grand Court jury last week.
Though the Crown said Enderson
Walker’s story was incredible, defence attorney John Furniss said his client’s
actions showed his innocence, and that he had been duped by a fisherman.
In a 5-2 decision, the jury found
Mr. Walker not guilty of possessing $230 in forged $10 bills and uttering 20 of
them while knowing they were forged.
The incident that led to the
charges occurred on 10 September, 2008, when a man took $300 to Quik Cash for
it to be sent to Jamaica.
The teller suspected that 20 $10
bills were counterfeit because of their texture and look. She told the man of
her suspicion and marked the notes with a special pen.
Meanwhile, the man phoned Mr.
Walker, from whom he had received the notes and for whom he was conducting the
transaction. Mr. Walker in turn phoned his employer, who then looked at three
$10 notes still in Mr. Walker’s possession and took them to the police.
Evidence led by Crown Counsel John
Masters included a statement from Senior Currency Officer Danna Ebanks of the
Cayman Islands Monetary Authority. She confirmed the notes were counterfeit,
based on their dull and blurry appearance, lack of the turtle watermark, absence
of raised imprint and other security features.
In summing up the case to the
jurors, Justice Howard Cooke said of Mr. Walker and the currency, “Whether he
was in possession in law would depend on whether he knew they were
The central issue, he said, could
be summarised as, “You have the thing and you know what it is.”
Also, delivering the money to the
man to take to Quik Cash could be regarded as uttering, the judge explained.
During the trial, Mr. Walker said
he had received the counterfeit notes from a fisherman.
He said that his girlfriend and
another couple had given him $280 to give to a fisherman so they could get fish
from him whenever they wanted.
Mr. Walker said he was told on the
morning of 9 September his bus in Jamaica needed repair. Around midday he saw
the fisherman’s cousin and told him he needed the money back. The fisherman
brought him the money that night and he stuffed it in his pocket without looking
at it. He had to go to work the next morning, so someone else took the money to
Quik Cash for him. He said he did not know the notes were counterfeit.
Mr. Walker said he knew only the
fisherman’s first name and that he worked at a gas station in West Bay. Police
officers found a man with that first name and showed his photo to Mr. Walker.
The defendant said “It looks like him, but it’s not him.”
Questioned further by Mr. Furniss,
Mr. Walker said he had looked several times for the fisherman but never found