Editorial for 26 June: It ain't the money, honey

Auditor General Alastair Swarbrick has advised the
University College of the Cayman Islands to write off more than $200,000 still
on the books from the tenure of former school president Hassan Syed.

We understand Mr. Swarbrick’s suggestion. The money is uncollectable
because, we are pretty sure, Syed won’t be gracing us with his presence any
time soon.

While at the helm of UCCI, Syed used the school’s credit
cards to buy jewellery, goods at department stores in Toronto and London,
furniture, spa treatments and a stay at a villa in France. He absconded owing
the university more than $300,000, some of which has been repaid.

But this ain’t about the money, honey.

While the auditor general is suggesting the money be written
off, the police say the investigation into Syed is ongoing.


Why hasn’t Syed already been apprehended? How hard is the
Royal Cayman Islands Police Service really looking for this fugitive?

When former Auditor General Dan Duguay’s office uncovered
Syed’s misdeeds, it sent the information over to the Financial Crimes Unit.

Their response, according to Mr. Duguay: “Well, he’s gone
now, we can’t get him back, so we are not going to prosecute.”

Police Commissioner David Baines insists the investigation
remains open and that an international arrest warrant has been issued.

Mr. Baines says that when Syed is traced, he will be
arrested and transported back to the Cayman Islands to face certain justice.

How hard is it in this day and age to trace someone?

We find it hard to believe that anyone in the Cayman Islands
with police authority is actively looking for Syed.

Had they been, justice would already have been served, and
Mr. Swarbrick might not be asking UCCI to remove the money from its books.


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