Ex-premier due back on bail

‘Residence’ sign to be removed

Updated 11:40am: Both ex-Premier McKeeva Bush and local businessman Suresh Prasad complied with the conditions of their bail and presented themselves to Royal Cayman Islands Police Service officers Tuesday, police said.

The men have been re-bailed until late March 2013, police said.

According to a statement released by the RCIPS: “The investigation is still very active and police are following several positive lines of enquiry. The re-bailing of the suspects is to allow further investigations to take place in a number of foreign jurisdictions including locations in Europe, the United States and in Asia.

“Officers are working closely with law enforcement colleagues overseas and the investigation is being progressed as expeditiously as possible; however it should be noted that the enquiry team is required to follow the stringent, and often lengthy, legal processes in place within these overseas jurisdictions to obtain the necessary evidential exhibits and supporting statements.”

Former Cayman Islands Premier McKeeva Bush is due to report back to local police early this month, according to conditions of his bail.  

The former premier, who was arrested on suspicion of theft and corruption-related offences on 11 December, has not been charged with any crimes. The Royal Cayman Islands Police Service has given no indication of when that might occur. Mr. Bush was released from police custody on bail conditions on 12 December following interviews with RCIPS Financial Crime Unit officers.  

According to a police service news release on the matter: “Mr. Bush has been placed on police bail until early February 2013, to allow further investigations to take place both here and abroad in connection with the allegations made 
against him. 

“Police can confirm that a considerable amount of property, including computer equipment, was seized during searches [at the former premier’s residence 
on 11 December].”  

Amidst all of the serious matters surrounding Mr. Bush, the “premier’s residence” sign in front of his West Bay home has been a subject of some contention in recent weeks. A number of individuals have contacted the Caymanian Compass asking when or if the sign would 
be taken down.  

According to officials in the government’s protocol office, the premier’s residence sign is scheduled to be removed as soon as possible. They did not give a date for when that might occur.  

Once it is removed, Premier Juliana O’Connor-Connolly’s office said Friday that she will not have that particular sign placed in front of her own home.  

Ms O’Connor-Connolly lives in the Sister Island of Cayman Brac, but also has a residence in Grand Cayman, where she stays when on the main island.  

“The premier said she will not be using the sign,” Charles Glidden, a spokesman for the premier, said Friday. 

“The investigations involving Mr. Bush are still very active and the RCIPS will be pursuing all lines of enquiry in consultation with the Legal Department,” the police statement read.  

A second man arrested on 11 December in connection with the police investigation into Mr. Bush, local businessman Suresh Prasad, had also not been charged as of press time.  

“[Mr. Prasad] has been arrested on suspicion of breach of trust, abuse of office and conflict of interest (contrary to Sections 13, 17 and 19 of the Anti-Corruption Law 2008 respectively) and inciting a breach of the corruption law,” a police statement on the arrest read.  

That arrest was curious, given that a local company Midland Acres Limited was fined a $1,300 after its director, Mr. Prasad, entered pleas of guilty on the quarrying company’s behalf to four charges of importing explosives without a permit at the conclusion of a court case on the matter last year. Charges against Mr. Prasad personally were left “on file” with the court, according to reports. 

During a public meeting in December, Mr. Bush spoke briefly about the reasons he perceived were being given for his own corruption-related arrest.  

“A further set of allegations in relation to a memorandum, which I sent to the collector of customs as premier and the minister of finance, along with a letter which was attached to the memorandum were made in respect of the importation of blasting materials [in early 2012] by Midland Acres,” he said.  

“My attorneys have written to the police in relation to these allegations many months ago, providing them a full explanation of the same,” he added. “Additional allegations were made in respect of the ownership of Midland Acres. I refute the allegations. I have said publicly, I have done nothing wrong [or] unlawful. When any charges are ever brought they will be rigorously defended and I am confident that these charges will be unsuccessful.”  

“They might have been right if they said I helped people, but not that I stole anything,” 
he said. 

0
0

11 COMMENTS

  1. So simple. You play with fire you get burnt. You ignore the law you get burnt, You break the law you get burnt. Should have burnt the computer. Guess its time for the ointment.

    0

    0
  2. Break the law? Some laws didn’t came from us. Some laws were handed down to us by the UK but there was no democratic census from Cayman Islands to make it law. Hence, to break the law… what law are you talking about??? UK Law is not God’s Law and it can be justified that it is not a law for us. So politician that disagrees with a law that doesn’t derive from the people of the Cayman Islands, I believe, can be justified to disagree and speak out against such law. It reminds of the American Revolution and the repressive laws Britian had on them. If such laws are so distant and causes our economic development and growth to slowdown or come to a halt, why is it so wrong to put the people here first over the elite people in the UK. Should our MLAs represent them over the people? I don’t think so.

    As for McKeeva Bush, he is not a perfect politician. He has his flaws like any other politician, and yes perhaps he is corrupt as corrupt as can be. However, much of the allegations I hear made about him, is about how he skipped process and procedures in order to get projects up and running. Let it be known that it is in the FCO interest to have our economy at its weakest point in order to have control over desenters and those who would challenge the UK’s authority. Good economy and economic coalitions is power for the local politician. A cruise berthing facility is good for these islands, but despite there being process and procedures that has to be complied with, there is a deliberate stress on these processes to slow down the progress of these initiatives. It is all about who gets more slice from the cake.

    McKeeva yes is not a perfect man, but I can assure you that the Governor and FCO minister declaring openly to the press that the Premier had more than one allegations, knew full well that it would hurt the island’s image. If they can hurt our reputation, they can also make investors and important banking customers reluctant to invest here. Bush has been marred with allegations and many of them I admit are true, but they are pertaining to laws that if complied with, would slow down or hinder our economy growth. At times, he sidestepped the law and policies in order to get things moving so jobs can be created and businesses up and running.

    So far, interestingly, you would have thought that they and Commissioner of Police would have had the evidence to CHARGE the Premier of a country just after his arrest. They arrest and charge ordinary people… why create international negative news about the island, arrest their leader just to NOT CHARGE HIM??? That is not right and just shows that our reputation is nothing to these colonial heads.

    I stand to be corrected

    0

    0
  3. I suspect Mr. Bush will be NOT be charged but merely bailed to return at a later date. This will keep the shadow of doubt over him as close to the Elections as possible and serve the interest of the FCO.

    The RCIPS still hasn’t explained (neither has the media asked) why – other than to embarrass Mr. Bush – an arrest was required given the insufficiency of evidence to support a charge.

    Given the passion of some to convict those we don’t like this statement may be for more suited for future generations, but: ‘the RCIPS should never have arrested the Premier unless the legal department had firstly reviewed the evidence and decided there was sufficient evidence charge him’.

    Now all it takes to get rid of someone in the Cayman Islands is to tell the RCIPS to arrest them – and they will, even if its for a non-arrestable offence as was the case with a sitting a Judge.

    0

    0
  4. Atticus – why don’t we wait to see what happens with Mr. Bush following this round of questioning before we launch into conspiracy theories?

    There is nothing unusual about there being a significant period between arrest and charge in a complex criminal case. In fact that is the norm. The evidence required to arrest someone is evidence sufficient for you to have reasonable grounds to suspect that they have committed an arrestable offence. Arrests aren’t done because someone told you to arrest someone. That decision is taken by the police, not the DPP.

    The decision to charge is taken by the DPP who should only decide whether to prosecute after the investigation has been COMPLETED and after ALL the available evidence has been reviewed. Obviously that decision could not have been taken before the search of Mr. Bush’s premises and computer were done, he was questioned and any consequential investigations completed. He could only have been detained for questioning if he was arrested since, as I understand it, he had declined to voluntarily submit to questioning.

    The standard required to charge is higher. The DPP must be satisfied that there is sufficient evidence to provide a realistic prospect of conviction against each suspect on each charge after taking account of ALL the evidence.

    The arrest did not ‘get rid’ of Mr. Bush. He was removed by his fellow legislators as premier on a vote of no confidence. He remains as an MLA.

    0

    0
  5. A complex criminal case?

    Please explain the complexity you see in proving, for example, whether or not someone actually stole a few books? Surely they should be able to charge for that after months of vigorous investigations.

    0

    0
  6. @SirTurtle,

    Exactly right. Not to mention some if the investigations have been going on YEARS. That’s either incompetence or a fishing expedition.

    0

    0
  7. Atticus – there is no reason for me to be hurt. I suggest you read my posts again. The case is obviously not really about the theft of books. The DPP will have to determine the extent of the criminality before charges are brought. If there are much more serious potential charges they are not likely to bring lighter charges in the meantime.

    0

    0
  8. I am tired of me, myself and I politicians and he is the worst of the worst. Can we move forward? We can’t with this man anywhere in the political arena. We need complete rejuvination from this man’s brand of politics.

    0

    0

Comments are closed.