CarePay trial: Prosecutors detail payments to Watson from AIS-CarePay account

Attempting to prove Cayman Islands businessman Canover Watson personally benefited from the CarePay hospital patient swipe-card contract, Crown prosecutors on Monday detailed a number of payments made to Watson or his relatives from the bank account set up to handle profits from that contract.

The payments were all “admitted” – meaning prosecutors and defense lawyers agreed they were correct. Watson is accused of using his position as former chairman of the Health Services Authority board to direct the award of the five-year, US$13 million hospital system deal to a local company, AIS Cayman Ltd., which he and business partner Jeffrey Webb allegedly controlled via the use of “sham” frontmen directors.

Prosecutors stated that between Dec. 23, 2010, when the account was opened, and July 2013, Webb was the sole signatory to the Fidelity Bank account that AIS Cayman Ltd. used. Webb did allow certain other individuals to conduct transactions from the account on his behalf.

Fidelity Bank never received any complaints that suggested any payment or transfer from the AIS Cayman account was fraudulent, prosecutors said.

An amount of US$100,000 was transferred from the AIS Cayman account in two separate payments between December 2010 and January 2011 to another company, P&W Distributors, which Watson co-owned. A few days after those transfers were made, the money went to another account held by Watson at Butterfield Bank.

In September and November 2011, two separate payments were made from the AIS-Fidelity account that went in part to a company called Evolution Home Theater in Atlanta, Georgia.

The first payment to the company, prosecutors said, was for US$27,000, and the second was for just under US$18,000. The Crown suggested these amounts went to pay for a home entertainment system Watson had installed at his residence in Loganville, Georgia.

A number of cash deposits made to P&W Distributors, totaling tens of thousands of dollars, went from the AIS Cayman account to P&W and were later deposited in the account of another company, CRW Holdings, which was part owned by Watson.

In August 2012, the AIS Cayman account was debited for US$15,000, which went to pay about half of the money given to Cayman Islands Football Association auditors Rankin-Berkower for audits completed between 2009 and 2011 on behalf of the football association.

Other payments from the AIS Cayman account included:

Debits on June 22, 2012 to repay amounts of US$14,700 and US$25,300 owed on Watson’s credit card.

A debit on June 26, 2012 of US$8,310.15 to pay for repairs/work on Watson’s vehicles.

A debit on June 27, 2012 of about US$3,500 for a credit card belonging to Watson’s father.

A debit on Aug. 6, 2012 of US$6,309 paid to a travel company for an airline trip to London for Watson’s daughter.

A number of other payments for home and life insurance and LIME (now FLOW) bills were paid from the account to Watson, according to prosecutors.

In total, the Crown has alleged that Watson personally benefited from the award of the CarePay contract by more than US$348,000 between 2010 and 2013.

During the course of the prosecution case, which ended on Monday after several weeks in court, it was revealed that Joscelyn Morgan, one of the alleged “sham” directors of AIS Cayman, had left Cayman some 18 months ago.

Deputy Director of Public Prosecutions Patrick Moran said Monday that Mr. Morgan was still wanted for questioning by police in connection with the case.

The other named local director, Eldon Rankin, had been listed as a prosecution witness at the start of the case, but Mr. Rankin never appeared to give testimony.

The third listed director of AIS Cayman, Jamaican businessman Douglas Halsall, was never listed as a witness in the trial.