Editorial for 14 December: It’s time for some answers

What, pray tell, is going on with our law enforcement services?

The Caymanian Compass has learned through court papers received from
the United States that there have been reports of two additional shipments of
illegal firearms from South Florida in late 2008 and early 2009.

While the ruling from US District Court Judge Robin Rosenbaum names
Mikkyle Brandon Leslie, aka Brandon Leslie Ebanks, and orders him to be
detained in the US until his trial date, the Caymanian Compass has declined to
publish the names of three others identified in the order for legal reasons and
to protect any witnesses from potential retaliation.

We appreciate what we have uncovered is huge and has more than a few
people squirming.

However, our over-arching question in all of this is: ‘Where has our
law enforcement been while illegal guns were smuggled into the Cayman Islands
in refrigerators and other household items?’

The US federal court records go into detail about how people bought
firearms here from Florida on more than one occasion.

We know from the records that in at least one incident a gun smuggled
from Florida was used in a crime on Grand Cayman.

How can the United States Government know that illegal firearms are
being shipped from Florida to Cayman without anyone having knowledge of the
crime on our shores? We’ve long heard rumours over the years that certain
individuals in police and customs have been aware of the illegal guns coming to
Cayman. Surely, the local police must have these same reports.

It is evident that there are some folk who have some explaining to do
with regards to this case. 

Now the United States is investigating and it’s the big boys taking a
look at what’s going on here.

We don’t know where this will all end or what the fallout will be, but
we can be sure of one thing; those who are leading our law enforcement services
need to speak up, and do so now.




  1. Top cop points finger at US


    The entire country of the Cayman Islands, and the Foreign Commonwealth Office of the UK owes you a huge debt of gratitude for the work and revelations presented in one of the most professional examples of investigative journalism I, as an amateur writer, has ever witnessed.

    What makes this work even more remarkable is the pressure and intimidation under which you are now working from certain people high up in authority.

    The above headline, taken from another source, carries the gist of a speech made by Commissioner of Police, David Baines, on the 21st. Dec, 2010, just about one year ago.

    In it, you will find Mr. Baines chastising the USA, speaking on international policies and political issues as if he were a politician, not a police officer.

    While his law-enforcement counterparts in the USA was hard at work doing what they are paid for; investigative police work.

    I can safely write these words of truth, fearing no retaliation from anyone in power in Cayman.

    While Mr. Baines was speaking of Dudus Coke and Tivoli Gardens, his own Kalashnikov has been running the same operation under his nose, for which both he and Dudus are now in federal custody in the US.

    Lets see if the FCO will finally take a look at Mr. Baines, in the light of this huge federal investigation that is no where near over…

    And finally do the right thing by the Cayman Islands.

  2. Don’t know what’s going on, I had a lot of problems with the website locking up and having to be refreshed this morning. In the end I gave up and tried again a couple of hours later but it looks like a part-finished version of my comments got sent somewhere along the line.

    This is what should have been posted –

    Possibly one answer is that this all seems to have happened during the period of maximum disruption in the leadership of the RCIPS following Operation Tempura.

    David George, at the time embroiled in the Henderson arrest fiasco, was coming to the end of his contract but when his replacement, Royce Hipgrave, arrived in mid-November 2008 he was only in the job for 48 hours before deciding there were too many loose ends. At the same time the Governor, Stuart Jack, fired RCIPS Commissioner Stuart Kernohan.

    James Smith, who had left the CNC (Civilian Nuclear Constabulary) in June 2008 under circumstances which are unclear, was rushed in to temporarily fill the now vacant Commissioner’s post roughly two weeks later.

    At the same time RCIPS was apparently experiencing a fairly major exodus of experienced civilian staff and police officers.

    Is it not likely that the explanation for any oversight is that at the time RCIPS were dealing with so many internal problems things like this just got left. Maybe it’s also possible that the authorities in the USA saw what was going on and simply decided to keep an apparently leaderless RCIPS out of the loop. If either of those scenarios are true (and I suspect only the mythical Larry Covington has the answers) then the responsiblity for any failing rests with the Governor of the day, who was supposed to be in overall charge of law enforcement, not with the RCIPS.

    Editor’s note: We had some internet issues this morning. They are hopefully resolved now.

  3. If I remember correctly, Just before the Dudas (Coke) affair, the Jamaica government challenged the United States to stop guns being shipped into their country from the US.

    It seem the challenge was accepted; and as I suggested then, Cayman is benefiting from their efforts..

    As far as blaming the police for these guns getting in. I would not go that far.. The information now know about the two prior shipment of guns was likely obtain during recent interrogation..

    It would go to reason though, that red flags should have been flying somewhere.

    The important fact is; law-Enforcement over there is active and on the case, and we have additional eyes over-watching us and on guard against these criminals.

    Now, Customs: They need to get on the ball and clean house..

  4. Having read the documents, as filed in the courts, I got the impression that there is a very high level of cooperation between local law enforcement and their US counterparts.

    In the US, as is the case in many other jurisdictions, a conviction depends on the quality and quantity of the evidence. In Cayman, I sometimes get the feeling that verdicts are subject to the whims of the jury.

  5. What if these guys start singing and some big names are called?Will Cayman be stupid enoough to not give up the king pin or will there be a mayhem as was in Jamaica in the Dudas case?
    Which government official or officials will be forced to resign? Some one MUST STEP DOWN!

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