William McKeeva Bush, West Bay legislator and the first Premier of the Cayman Islands, appeared in Grand Court on Friday, when Justice Michael Mettyear was informed that a trial date has tentatively been set for March 2014.
Mr. Bush faces two charges of misconduct in public office relating to alleged dishonest use of a government-issued credit card on dates in 2009. He is also charged with four counts of breach of trust by a member of the Legislative Assembly, also relating to alleged dishonest use of a government-issued credit card. Those allegations relate to various dates between September 2009 and March 2012.
No charges have yet been put to Mr. Bush in court and no pleas have been formally recorded.
Defence attorney Michael Alberga asked that the matter be mentioned again on Friday, 13 September. He indicated he would have the availability dates of counsel from overseas by that time and be in a position for setting a trial date.
Crown prosecutor Michael Snape said the crown had a date for March “pencilled in” and he accepted the defence’s need to confirm the availability of lead counsel.
Justice Mettyear asked if there were likely to be a problem as to which judge should hear the case. Mr. Alberga said he did not yet know. The judge said the sooner notice is given, the easier it will be to arrange.
Mr. Bush became the Cayman Islands’ first premier in November 2009, when the new Constitution came into effect. Before then, he was known as the leader of government business. He was also minister for finance, tourism and development.
Days after his arrest, Mr. Bush was removed from office by a vote of no confidence in his government on 18 December, 2012. He continued to serve as the first elected member of the Legislative Assembly for West Bay.
In the general election on 22 May, Mr. Bush was returned to office after having again received the highest number of votes in his district.