Report on legal review under wraps

| 31/07/2015 | 63 Comments
Cayman News Service

Helen Kilpatrick, Cayman Islands Governor

(CNS): A report by a UK prosecutor who came to the Cayman Islands earlier this year to review the local criminal justice system will not be made public anytime soon. The governor’s office has refused to release the document by Claire Wetton, which examined the way criminal caseloads are being handled by the crown and the court system. CNS filed a freedom of information request in June for the project summary of Wetton’s findings but the information manager said the report was “a working document” and the office would consider its release in six months.

“This will allow for free and frank discussion to take place between the relevant agencies, as is provided for in the FOI law,” the information manager at the governor’s office stated.

Cayman News Service (CNS) has requested an internal review of the decision because of the wide public interest in the workings at the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (ODPP) and the massive caseloads going through the criminal courts.

Wetton, who is a criminal justice adviser from the UK’s Crown Prosecution Service, came to Cayman for twelve weeks in January. Her remit was to help local officials improve the management of trial cases, review Criminal Procedure Code rules, disclosure and witness care and the prosecution of domestic violence cases, as well as child witnesses and gang related crime.

The UK prosecutor was also understood to have delivered training to RCIPS officers and assistance to the ODPP Summary Court Team and to the court to deal with the weaknesses in the criminal justice system.

The refusal of the governor’s office to release Wetton’s early findings and advice comes against the backdrop of the collapse of a high profile gang-related murder case this week. Prosecutors continue to face considerable criticism over a number of issues, from the decisions regarding whether to or not and why ill-prepared lawyers are facing massive caseloads.

Governor Helen Kilpatrick had described her visit as an important project.

“Identifying and improving upon procedures which can assist in the smooth and efficient running of the court system is crucial to reducing criminality in the Cayman Islands. I have asked Claire to meet with me on a regular basis to update me personally on the project as it goes forward,” she stated.

However, the governor appears not to be prepared to update the rest of the country.

The refusal of the FOI request by the UK’s representative here, however, comes as no surprise. The governor’s office continues to be engaged in the longest and most costly legal battle with the Information Commissioner’s Office over the release of a report regarding a complaint about the infamous internal police probe, Operation Tempura. The governor’s office has been directed to release the report numerous times by both the current commissioner, Jan Liebaers, and his predecessor, Jennifer Dilbert.

But like Duncan Taylor, the previous governor, before her, Kilpatrick appears to be fighting tooth and nail not to release the document, which is understood to be embarrassing for the authorities. During the most recent development in the ongoing courtroom saga, which stretches back over two years, an undefined and vague investigation into Martin Bridger, the SIO on the discredited probe, resulted in the commissioner being told by the courts to consider this new police enquiry. This was after the governor’s office threw in the new enquiry at the eleventh hour as another reason not to disclose the controversial report.

Liebaers was asked to talk with the commissioner and reconsider his previous ruling and provide yet another decision, which is still in the works.

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Category: Courts, Crime

Comments (63)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Pay attention Who, we were talking about Cayman, not UK. You seem to suffer that Attention deficiency issue.Still, never mind, rape, thieving, wife beating, child abusing, animal maltreating,gun toting, education lacking, corrupt to the core, lodge supporting, cartel owned rip offs, pension stealing Cayman makes much more interesting reading than the UK. And if we weren’t here no one would irritate you. Lets ship in another 50,000 brits, we will have this place straight in no time. Silent on Caymans own pedo trial?

    • Anonymous says:

      If 60 million plus Brits can’t get the UK in order, I doubt 50,000 could do much to help Cayman, buddy.

      So…thanks, but no thanks.

      Cheers,

      – Who

  2. I don't always comment... says:

    Depending upon what is in the report, its release could do anything from damage important working relationships within government necessary to its day to day functioning, to change the direction and outcome of many criminal cases including those already completed. The report was prepared as an internal document to assist an internal review & improvement process, and so the report won’t be considered for release until that process is complete, when the report will be describing a historical state of affairs. Nothing sinister about that. It’s called a fait accompli, and most of us appreciate the opportunity to pull one off, rather than clean up our act under the full glare of disapproving others. In government, it’s even more important to do things this way, where the consequences of being too open can be serious. Moreover, governments understand very well why news organisations make so many of these requests: so they can sell scandalous headlines. They are no more interested in the truth for its intrinsic value than the government. And the readers? Well, they just want to be entertained/intrigued/appalled as the case may be, or want help grinding their individual axes with the new information. Basically, this is just a game being played faithfully by all participants, as always. Nothing to see here, now move along, that’s a good chap.

    • Anonymous says:

      Nah sir, you can’t have it both ways. You can’t bellow put transparency to the top of your voice while at the same time also cry out for cover up. If we have, which we have an endemic situation within the court system, then the frailties thereof as well as in competencies and whatever else should be brought to the fore. What about people’s rights that are being abrogated by being placed in remand while the police and justice system gets its act together. What about continued costs for defendants when their case is postponed again and again because of a myriad of excuses. It’s time to clean the shop and the public needs to know what they will be footing the bill for. Let the chips fall where they may.

      • I don't always comment... says:

        Yes, it’s important for everyone to know what’s going on. If you are ever asked what difficulties you have had with your colleagues, superiors and subordinates, or with the systems and methods designed and employed by them, and answered frankly, please make sure to tell them what you said, and all of us too. That way, your job and many others can become untenable, and your employer can lose as many contracts as it deserves to lose, and all very rightly so, in the name of transparency.

  3. Wisdom Teeth says:

    See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the basic principles of this world rather than on Christ! 11:54pm my only hope is that on the day of your calamity you find the persons you praised and pray to them for salvation and wait for them deliver you. Your suggestion of burning the Word believe me when I tell you many have tried yet it is still here and will outlast you & me both. It is better to be thought of a fool than to open ones mine and remove all doubt! We shall all pray for the Lord to have mercy on your poor soul.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Ms. Helen Kilpatrick is certainly not interested in the opinion of a few country “hicks”. She was sent here by the UK to do a job and a damned good job she will do. You pathetic people have hidden behind your bibles for far too long. It is time for Human Rights , justice and equity for all. In America, the christian haters will soon be consigned to re-education camps and that day can not come soon enough in Cayman. It is time to throw the bible in the fire and embrace our New World Order. Hail Obama!, Hail Alden! Hail Baines! Hail Kilpatrick! Down with the haters and soon come Carbon Tax.

  5. Anonymous says:

    9.52-do you think anyonce really cares that you are sick and tired?

  6. Anonymous says:

    Ah 9.31…Cayman planning…yes lets give it a go and….when it doesn’t work because we are too small and crap at what we do, as well as having no ability to plan for the future then……we’ll……we’ll…we’ll do something else that doesn’t work because the UK wont take us back.

  7. Anonymous says:

    And you please enjoy the gang warfare, crime wave, inability to service local or foreign debt, falling standards that will surely follow. Good luck with that. Now Bermuda or BVI? Maybe Barbados?

    • Anonymous says:

      Awww…bless your lil heart. Did the liddul babee post his cw’omment at the toppie-woppie of the pagey-wagey so he would get more viewey-wooweys??
      LOL!!

      My friend, if you are correct in your prediction, then it is CLEAR that you and I can expect the very same living conditions … except I will experience it in far better weather.

      You guys are funny.
      ;-D

      • Anonymous says:

        We may be funny, or not 5.34, but we are sane and can see the future clearly. Carry on with your myopia and talking to yourself. Ironically you will still be blaming everyone else but your self when it goes wrong. It’s what people like you do best.

        • Anonymous says:

          Yeah, yeah … blah, blah, blah. So says the man who relocated from his own country to me in mine.
          GTFOH!!

          Btw, good luck with the pedos back home.
          (Have you seen today’s headlines re the latest high-profile child molester – former PM Edward Heath, who by the way was also good buddies with Jimmy Saville? Before Britain even thinks about criticising others on gay rights or any other shortcomings, it needs to address the cultural dysfunction that is pedophilia which is running rampant in its society.)

          – Who

  8. Michel says:

    I am sick and tired that the UK Governors never wants to disclose findings Paid by us by the past 3 Governors at least. She is not appointed here because the UK or she care about our beautiful Islands. It’s a process called decolonisation after they destroy us monetary wise ( Kill our financial Sector) and force the Caymanian populace to be so confused and becoming second class citizens. They first force laws for our Islands thru our Politicians in turn that affect us. Next play for them is to make us hate our Politicians and totally make us believe that it’s all our lawmaker fault and of course make us formely medium class and poor poor people now suffering very much. I have sailed for many years to many other Islands many both before and after they became independent to making my home in the Cayman Islands. I have seen what Independence can do to a country after the UK is done with them. At this stage I would choose Independance over the Hyprocracy of the Masters because I feel the end result with them will not be much better. But Unless we as a people wake up and stand together against this Anarchy and say enough is enough; all we will be able to do is complain and the Islands quality of Life detoriate. Stand up and be counted. ANY Government that we will elect in the future will not be able do do better then our current one unless we elect wolves in sheep clothing. The Cayman Islands are going down the drain and it seems as if so many are blind to it. I am certain that our forefathers ( in this case my wife”s) would NOT put up with this Hush Hush business. What about our Grand children? Is it going to be fair to them ? It sure won,t be any easier.

    • Anonymous says:

      Amen, my brother.

      Anyone who knows British colonial history can recognise the tell-tale signs clearly. Unfortunately, the Caymanians that are willing to acknowledge this fact are in the minority. Also, the British defenders in our midsts are quick to highlight every conceivable negative of our diminishing reality – except for the fact that the UK is ultimately “governing” over the downward spiral.

      – Whodatis

      • Anonymous says:

        Interesting perspective WHO. People of all walks of life and nationalities generally get what’s right and what’s wrong. Yet in your self admitted small minority, you suggest that everyone else is constantly wrong. Supreme arrogance at its worst.

        • Anonymous says:

          Yes, who should I believe? The facts and patterns of British colonial history or your anonymous self on a CNS thread?

          Hmmm…not a difficult one there buddy.

          (smh)

      • Anonymous says:

        Dear Who,
        Please travel more. The consequences of independence are clear in the Caribbean and the answer is not a puffed up ego to allow our corrupt politician cronies the keys to Cayman. My word! Look how Mac really “believes” he could gamble 400k and it was not wrong? Look at Juliana can “give” land to who she favors and “believes” it is not wrong? To be fair to bash PPM, our Premier “allows” the Immigration and Business Staffing boards to continue its white collar Blind eye to qualified Cayman College grads for permit fees and favors.
        No Mr Who- our crony government is not fair minded honest, or ready to be given any more power.
        Thank God for our silent majority who pray for honest men to step up and put aside our current bunch of greedy clowns.
        No Jamaica, Antigua, Turks & Caicos chaos here please!!

        • Anonymous says:

          Yeah … you keep praying. That’s exactly what HE, the FCO and UK government want you to do.

          – Who

          P.S. I make it habit to not take advice from those that are mentally stuck in the 1960’s. Grow a pair.

  9. Anonymous says:

    What could the report say ?
    nothing good that’s for sure It wont say the DPP is doing a good job
    its not going to say the judges are doing a good job
    or the police
    What it will say is the island is dysfunctional at best
    and a complete failure most of the time

    • Anonymous says:

      Well, we are British after all.
      Are or you one of the ignorant ones that believe we and the rest of the world are unaware of the true state of modern Britain?

      – Who

  10. Anonymous says:

    The FCO covered up what really happened in Tempura. Thank goodness there are still people in this world who have the courage and fortitude to fight the injustices created by those who are not held to account due to dishonest and unethical cover ups. They silenced Kernohan but will they be able to silence the others who continue with their efforts to have the truth exposed. The manner in which genuine Cayman people have been misled by the FCO and others is nothing short of a national disgrace. The sooner someone has the courage to call for a full public inquiry as to what happened in Tempura the better. We believe that revelation of the truth will truly astound the International Community.

  11. Nauticalone says:

    Justice delayed appears as justice denied. The Gubna is delaying here-question is why? Appears to be a cover up, just like the Tempura Report.

  12. Mr Pearl White says:

    Anon 3:22pm That “white paper” of which you speak is merely for the subjects to wave around in the colonies. Its value to the FCO and UK is the same value they put on that other soft white paper you find in bathrooms hanging next to the toilet. When we whine and complain about them not abiding by what’s written on this same piece of white paper, they simply put it in a soft white bowl which contains water that you sit on in the same bathroom. The water then dilutes the paper and they then push a small white lever attached to this white bowl of water where it then flows down a big white pipe and ends up at a location which best describes exactly what it is and what they think about us and exactly what we are going to get out it.

  13. Cayman Pot hound says:

    No doubt we paid for it too????? Passivity is the same as defending injustice. Injustice in the end produces independence.

    • Driftwood says:

      In terms of injustice I think the score is something like
      UK-1 (tempura) Cayman politicians-150. Easy to divert attention from your own issues

    • Anonymous says:

      Don’t want to burst your bubble, but nobody will give a rats arse whether you go independent or not.

  14. Catcha Fire says:

    Caymanians need to understand that anything that goes against or contrary to their “rule” here will never be shown to the Natives. What a pity we have so many UK stooges in our government. None are more hopelessly enslaved than those who falsely believe they are free.

  15. Sharkey says:

    This is obvious that the Governor has read this report and find it too embarrassing to release it to the public. Why is she not trying to correct the issues that are in the report? Could it be that her hands are tied ? Who could tie her hands on these issues ? Why ? I think that it’s a disgrace for her and the Government to know what is been called for in this report, and do nothing about them. Says that the people of Cayman Islands need to demonstrate and demand that these issues be taken care off now, since the report can’t be made public, but we know what the report is about, and see those problems exist in the Cayman Islands.

  16. Anonymous says:

    Yet another expensive and covered up exercise by the UK against the people of the Cayman Islands.
    So much historical mismanagement and horrendous governance – yet many of us want to go independ now ent over the gay rights issue.

    Priorities folks, priorities.

    – Who

    • Anonymous says:

      Who- you couldn’t be independent if you tried. Your offshore industry would disappear and with it your budget, and there is already more than adequate proof that you can’t find any upstanding and intelligent leaders in the 30,000 of you currently. You will be in a catastrophic state in a short space of time and then probably get invaded by Jamaica or similar.

    • Anonymous says:

      Well I suppose the history of the local politricks from Jim Bodden onwards shows that independence will guarantee an end to historical mismanagement and horrendous governance. But at least it will be guaranteed 100% homegrown incompetence and corruption which is no doubt better in your eyes.

      • Anonymous says:

        I hear you. Yet the likes of you are strangely against us going at it our own. Surely a gesture out of concern for Caymanians, right? After all, it is clear from your post that you hold us in such high regard.

        The bigger question is, “Where will you go when that day comes?”
        You obviously do not like your own home country.

        Idiot.

        • Anonymous says:

          Not a hard question really, I’ll move back to the first world. Once the easy tax free money has gone, there really is no reason to stay. I love my home country and never had any intention of not going back. Thanks for asking but please don’t make assumptions.

          • Anonymous says:

            Ok, sounds like a win-win all around then.
            Cayman will be just fine without the mess that is the UK.
            Enjoy “the illegals”, 7 month winters, and 50% income tax rate.
            Toodles!

            😉

      • Anonymous says:

        Why bring Jim Bodden into this story? Because dead men cant defend themselves? If he was alive he would find you and fix you. Whatever you want to say about him, he stood up for CAYMANIANS. And he would hate to see how Caymanians are subjugated and suffering in our own islands. The Governor is the representative of the UK and the UK’s interests. She doesn’t give a fig about Cayman or Caymanians. She has her beach view and her fat pay cheque and she’s fine and dandy. Just like most of the Brits who come here to lord it over us and get rich tax free.

        • Pit Bull says:

          Jim Bodden set the tone for a culture of corruption and political patronage that persists to this day. If Caymanians are suffering today then much of the problems can be traced back to him.

        • Anonymous says:

          I think your phrase “find you and fix you” pretty much sums up JB

  17. Anonymous says:

    The Governor’s office is obviously relying on section 20. (1) of the FoI Law which states that:
    “A record is exempt from disclosure if-
    (b) its disclosure would, or would be likely to, inhibit the free and
    frank exchange of views for the purposes of deliberation;”.

    ‘Claire’s’ 12-weeks secondment started on 27 January and should have been over on 22 April 2015. Even if she took until 2 weeks after to submit her report, Helen should have had it by the first week in May. That means that she has already had it for 12 weeks – the same length of time as the secondment! The questions are:
    what has she been doing with the bloody report for the past 12 weeks; and
    why in God’s name does she need another 26 weeks to “exchange views”?
    Nothing that I have heard about her since she took up office has impressed me and this certainly confirms my view that she is simply not up to this job.

  18. Anonymous says:

    This report must be bad and would probably embarrass the Governor who may have recently released the DPP’s contract, The office of DPP was created by the Cayman Islands Constitution that came into effect November 2009 so a five year contract would have expired late last year or early this year. Funny I don’t recall seeing an ad for the DPP position but the rules require that All positions in the civil service have to be advertised.

  19. Anonymous says:

    So much for Good Governance, Transparency and Accountability in the Cayman Islands…you are failing the people of the Cayman Islands Governor Kilpatrick!

    • Anonymous says:

      We the people are entitled to see this report. We demand the release of this report immediately. Come on Gov, step up and show us you are here to make a better Cayman

      • Anonymous says:

        We the people? If you were in UK you would have it. But because you want your own idiots to run the place, uk rules don’t apply. Especially as they don’t apply UK rules in terms of good governance or anything else… Ask the auditor general

  20. Anonymous says:

    Typical! HE refuses to release Tempura documents, refuses to release this report. Yet White Paper calls for good governance including transparency in public processes. Double standards by UK FCO

    • Anonymous says:

      They are just being consistent with the governments view on the release of reports. Has the unaltered school report ever been released?

  21. Anonymous says:

    How many more people are we going to fly in and pay for to teach incompetent and unwilling forces?

    I don’t know what it is about this island, we claim to be trying so hard to fix issues that have spiralled out of control and that were never confronted by past politicians and government officials, only to realise the issue has been made 10x worse and we’ve wasted 50k on one project.

  22. Pit Bull says:

    The FOI legislation does not grant any power to request documents from the Governor. There is no jurisdiction to require production.

  23. Just another Dave in Paradise says:

    Transparency is the enemy of incompetence……..

  24. Anonymous says:

    Nice link into the Aina report FOI. Latest on that is it’s heading for another $500K court hearing in the Autumn. The phrase ‘money to burn’ seems appropriate here. Pity it’s our money she’s spending.

    CNS, are you going to file an FOI request for Wetton’s report?

    CNS: You have to read all the way down to the third sentence, first paragraph: “CNS filed a freedom of information request in June for the project summary of Wetton’s findings but the information manager said the report was ‘a working document’ and the office would consider its release in six months.” It was the point of the article.

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