Charges against Joey Ebanks allege dishonesty

North Side candidate Joey Ebanks appeared in Summary Court on Tuesday charged with offences relating to his position and allegedly committed between 1 September and 31 March. 

Magistrate Valdis Foldats noted that the first charge was brought under a section of the Penal Code that makes it a Category A offence, meaning it can be heard only in Grand Court. 

That charge is obtaining a money transfer by deception on or about 18 January. Details are that he dishonestly obtained by deception $1,188.63 belonging to the Electricity Regulatory Authority by falsely representing that funds were required for official travel expenses. He is former managing director of the authority. 

Attorney Fiona Robertson, who was acting for attorney Ben Tonner, had asked for the matter to be mentioned again on 28 May because Mr. Tonner was involved in a lengthy Grand Court trial. 

However, because the Category A charge must be transmitted “forthwith”, the magistrate set Friday, 3 May, as the next mention date in both Grand Court and Summary Court.  

Crown Counsel Michael Snape said it would come as no surprise that the Crown would opt for Grand Court for all the charges since they all relate to the defendant’s position of authority.  

The Caymanian Compass initially quoted from a police press release that referred to a total of 29 charges, while Tuesday’s court list itemised 24. The actual number at this stage is 27. 

A charge of obtaining property by deception alleges that, between 1 September, 2012, and 31 March, 2013, at Cayman Mac Store, he dishonestly obtained Apple iPhones and iPads worth $67,944 belonging to Alphasoft by falsely representing that he was authorised to make such purchases by the Electricity Regulatory Authority. 

A charge of transfer of criminal property alleges transfer somewhere in the Cayman Islands of nine iPhones and six iPads with a total value of $9,868. 

Two charges of making a false document allege that he signed the name of another person on a cheque without authority. One is to a gas station on 1 January for $77.10; the other, on 28 January, is for $5,000. 

Eight charges allege that, with intent to defraud or deceive, he uttered cheques signed by another. The amounts range from $1,009.61 for Cayman Travel to $24,441 for Cayman Mac Store. 

There are seven theft charges, defined as dishonestly appropriating sums from the regulatory authority with intent to permanently deprive the authority. The sums range from $850 to $5,000 and relate to a period between 20 December and 22 February. 

Seven charges of obtaining property by deception refer to sums of money belonging to the authority. The defendant is accused of falsely representing that the funds were required for official travel expenses between 31 October and 16 January. Amounts range from $1,008 to $1,976. 

Joseph Fitzgerald Ebanks, as he is referred to on the court list, is a candidate for North Side in the 22 May general elections. He resigned from his position as managing director of the regulatory agency after he was suspended by Governor Duncan Taylor in March. 

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