Government clerk cleared on 24 charges

A former government clerk was cleared this week on multiple counts of stealing administrative fees from applicants for naturalization in the Cayman Islands, but could face a second trial after a jury failed to reach a verdict on all the charges against her.

Atisa Ebanks was found not guilty on Wednesday of 22 charges of theft and two of false accounting. However, the jury could not reach a verdict on six similar charges connected to the alleged scam.

She was released on bail as the Crown considers whether to proceed with a second trial on the outstanding charges; five of theft and one of false accounting. A hearing has been scheduled for Aug. 5.

The crown’s case was that Ebanks stole the $500 fee for naturalization in more than 100 incidents and falsified receipts to cover her tracks between early 2007 and March 2009. The trial focused on 30 specific instances.

She denied the charges.

The jury delivered its verdict Wednesday after a two-and-a-half week trial.