Cuban migrant charged with assaulting guard

Defendant’s immigration status uncertain, court told

Late last month a disturbance among detainees at the Bodden Town Civic Centre resulted in police using pepper spray to bring the situation under control. - Photo: Jewel Levy

A Cuban migrant detained at the Bodden Town Civic Centre was brought to Summary Court on Tuesday, charged with assaulting a guard.

Darvis Manuel Ramos Mendoza, 37, is accused of committing common assault against the guard on June 25. The second charge alleges he held a knife with a five-inch blade at the guard’s neck, causing him harassment, alarm or distress.

Through an interpreter, Mendoza told Magistrate Valdis Foldats, “He had a steel pipe against me.” The magistrate asked what the defendant’s situation was – how long he had been in Grand Cayman and whether he was being sent back to Cuba.

Crown counsel Greg Walcolm said Mendoza had no status on the island. Since the file had been brought to court with no notice, he could not say specifically what Mendoza’s situation was.

Mendoza, again through the interpreter, said, “I think they’re going to send me back Wednesday or Friday.”

The magistrate explained that in Cayman, anyone who gets charged gets papers so that they can understand what they are accused of and what the evidence is.

The magistrate said he would try to find out from immigration authorities what their plans were for Mendoza. The magistrate said that if authorities intended to send Mendoza back to Cuba, a decision would have to be made. The matter was set for mention again on July 5.

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