‘Sexting’ track star faces deportation

| 07/03/2018 | 87 Comments
Ato Modibo Stephens, Cayman News Service

Ato Stephens

(CNS): Cabinet has directed that Ato Modibo Stephens, a former international sprinter, should be deported from the Cayman Islands following his conviction last year for ‘sexting’ with one of his teenage athletes while he worked as a local coach. Stephens, who is married to Caymanian track star Cydonie Mothersill, is originally from Trinidad and also has US citizenship. He was jailed last August for 18 months after his trial but was released late last year. Cabinet has now approved the issuance of an order to oust him from the islands, based on a direction from the court.

According to a statement from the premier’s office, Cabinet is seeking the departure of Stephens by 16 March or as soon as can be arranged by the Department of Immigration after that date. The office said the matter was now with the governor’s office, which is responsible for officially signing the deportation order.

Stephens was granted conditional release from prison in November, just three months after he was sentenced, because he had already served a considerable part of his time on remand before he was tried. The former coach had left Cayman for the United States when the allegations surfaced but he was extradited after he was charged.

He was found guilty on just one count of using an ICT network to annoy, harass or abuse an underage female, but was acquitted of the more serious charges of indecent assault and gross indecency against the same girl as a result of contradictory evidence presented to the court.

Last month it was reported in the local media that Cabinet did not intend to deport Stephens, which caused considerable controversy in the community but was denied by the government.

Soon after the issue made headlines, it emerged that Stephens was taking legal action against the Cayman Islands Athletics Association, claiming he was booted out without a fair hearing and that he had not been convicted of a sexual offence. At the time of the allegations, Stephens was coaching a team of young athletes and was working with the CIAA.

Given that Stephens is married to a Caymanian and the father of two local children, he is likely to appeal the deportation.

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Category: Local News

Comments (87)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Re: “16 and 17 year olds sexting. FINE. Laws saying otherwise are retarded and makes no logical sense.”

    How can that be FINE though?

    E.g. What if you and a teenaged relative exchange phones for some reason?

    What if the teen in question was your son? His 15 year old girlfriend has taken and sent to his phone topless selfies.
    For some reason you take back the phone without knowledge of the contents.

    Now, let us imagine you happen to lose your phone and it is handed into the police, or a colleague borrows it and discovers the images.

    You are now officially in possession of child pornography.

    Hence my original question of; What are the laws surrounding teenagers / kids creating and transmitting nude images?
    Should they be held accountable in some way?

  2. Anonymous says:

    Should have married Lorena Bobbitt

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  3. Anonymous says:

    Is it a criminal offence for a teenager to “sext” images of themselves via our telecommunication network?

    If not, should it be?

    Of course the liability might ultimately fall at the feet of their parents / guardians in the eyes of the court, and that will be the best deterrent of all.

    E.g. There was a recent case in the USA where a 17 yr old student male athlete was arrested for child porn, even though it was a sext image willfully sent to him from a 16 yr old female student of the same school.
    Who is the actual offender in this case?

    Are teenagers being educated and advised regarding what constitutes child pornography, and that a simple selfie can carry tremendous legal and life-changing implications?

    We need to have a pragmatic discussion on these everyday situations in these modern times.

    It is easy to forget there is / was a 2-way exchange in this case… which only came to light by way of circumstance.

    (It reminds me of a notorious local case some years back; Upon her pregnancy, a mother discovered her teenage daughter was having sex with a slightly older young man.
    The mother involved the police, the guy was arrested and ultimately jailed.
    Following the birth, a paternal DNA test was administered and it was discovered another older gentleman was the actual father.
    The girl was around my age at the time, and it was common knowledge that she was only interested in older guys and was engaging is consensual sex with them; self-declared.)

    Granted, statutory rape is an open and shut case and these fellas should know better, but we ALL know personal examples of these types of relationships.

    In fact, even the current President of France has a very interesting / unsettling “love story” with his wife – and if genders were reversed, I am quite certain imprisonment and “sex offender” status would have been a reality by now, but I digress.

    Many teenage girls are “messy” and rebellious and will actively seek older men for sex and relationships … no one can, and shouldn’t try to, say otherwise for I remember it clearly.

    Btw, in no way am I suggesting any of the above applies to the case / teenager in question and the offender was clearly in the wrong, not only due to the vast age difference and nature of relationship.

    However I believe the original question ought to be addressed as we are living in a technologically advanced time wherein standing legislation and societal biases may be severely lacking.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Okay. Here is a response to your comment. 3:34 am.

      16 and 17 year olds sexting. FINE. Laws saying otherwise are retarded and makes no logical sense.

      Point taken there.

      THIS case. Is just plain sick my friend. Here you have a 14 year old girl with a grown-ass man in his 50’s who has children and grand-children. He is the adult in the situation and should know better, despite the young girl’s promiscuity. He is a predator and a sick pervert who needs to be locked away indefinitely. Sadly he only got a slap on the wrist.

      Go figure aye.

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  4. Anonymous says:

    The weak spineless unity government took the easy option. Appease the community by deporting but they know full well and have probably taken advice from the AG that an appeal will be lodged and with a wife and children born here he will be allowed to stay.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Please use your time to research the relevant legal principles and case law before displaying such ignorance.

  5. Anonymous says:

    So she is staying with him? Someone help those children.

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  6. Anonymous says:

    Why are all the other non-Caymanian prisoners deported back to their own countries as well regardless of their offenses? Why just this guy?

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    • Anonymous says:

      9.07am.. I am with you.. I sure wish that all the scum bags could be deported… along with all the other scums that are here destroying our beautiful Cayman Islands…. I further wish we could some how get rid of ALL the scum bags Caymanians. Waiting on time and praying.

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      • Anonymous says:

        That’s quite a list. You forgot the scumbag iguanas and scumbag chickens. What about the scumbag Churches? I mean, what did they ever do for us?

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        • Anonymous says:

          God gave you a free will and you choose to serve the devil.
          Don’t blame others for your life choices.

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          • Anonymous says:

            Calling humans scum is serving the devil and you don’t even know it. Old Beazlebug is playing you.

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            • Anonymous says:

              Well played that man! I do love people who catch the church brigade at their own game. Please take Saturday and Sunday off as a reward.

  7. Anonymous says:

    I read a comment today and in typical Cayman fashion it read:

    “Let his wife go with him cuz she isn’t a real Caymanian anyway, she wasn’t born here”

    Lmao at you people. She is Caymanian when she is winning and doing well but her husband is a pedophile yet she sticks by him and suddenly becomes a fake Caymanian. I agree, he should definitely be deported and by her choice to stay with him, she should leave with him as well. No need to stay here and stir shit, which will only get stinker. He already got a slap on the wrist, so haul ass to somewhere else where the justice system won’t be so light on him if he reoffends.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Born Caymanian, paper Caymanian, Martian or other……if she feels the need to stick with that loser she can follow him to wherever he ends up. I can tell you right now, it wouldn’t be me defending this type of disgusting behavior. Does she not worry about the effects this will have on her kids?

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      • Anonymous says:

        I am sure she is dealing with that herself and its not up to you to tell her how to manage her kids. She committed no crime. The only difference here is that unlike so many “holier than thou” people opining on these subjects, he was the one that got caught. There are hundreds more who beat, abuse, rape commit incest, adultery, bestiality and so on who think not getting caught means they are ok….

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        • Observer says:

          4:04 pm: it is sad that there are so many instances of this atrocious acts against children flying below the radar, as you allege—and I believe there are many—but that does not mitigate this man’s actions.

          Even one case is horrible.

          Too many women collude with men in their lives and thus help to perpetuate these crimes.

          Just read about a US case in which a man impregnated his daughter twice—and this started when she was 10.

          Both the man and his wife were arrested and are awaiting trial.

    • Anonymous says:

      How does 1 comment give you license to talk about ‘you people’? Perhaps you’ll do us people a favour take your ignorance to another jurisdition as well.

  8. Concerned caymanian says:

    Good riddance to bad rubbish

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  9. Anonymous says:

    I hope he never come back on our soil!

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  10. Anonymous says:

    Once again, certain factions of Cayman society are attacking his wife – from a fresh vantage point.

    I have grown up around that wonderful girl / woman and have watched her have to endure the most vicious attacks surrounding her nationality, when all she wanted to do was share her amazing talent with the world.

    Cydonie is an outstanding athlete as well as a generous and humble individual. She served as an inspiration to countless of Cayman’s youth and has maintained her respectability over the years.

    Just as I do every time we see each other nowadays; give her a hug and whisper a word of encouragement in her ear; I publicly extend my support in the midst of this personal storm.

    I wish you and your children well and never allow any life circumstance to make you doubt yourself or your integrity.

    I still love her as much now as I did back in the day when I was regularly assigned as one of her finish line “catchers” – as she was guaranteed to fall-out as she took the gold.
    Not from excitement but because the little mawga’ girl wouldn’t eat!
    (Wonderful memories.)

    Keep your head up Cydonie, and please do not for one second consider leaving your home, the Cayman Islands.

    – Whodatis

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    • Anonymous says:

      8.24am… if I was getting that kind of money I would also be generous and humble to the core. It might have started out innocent, but for the kind of money Government afforded her, what have we got to show???

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    • Anonymous says:

      Apologies to Cydonie for the vicious attacks surrounding her nationality. They were misdirected. Caymanians have a habit of pointing anger at foreigners who seek to share or dominate the limelight that should be designated FOR NATIVES ONLY. That is our fault. For example, we allow our government to level the playing field regarding national teams and the Miss Cayman Islands Pageant, which should all be reserved for 2nd generation native Caymanians with strong patriotic backgrounds. NO EXCEPTIONS WHATSOEVER.

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    • Anonymous says:

      I’m not blaming her at all for the fowl actions of her husband and I don’t think people are attacking her per say, apart from the little jabs about her nationality “in light of this debacle”. We all know you are Caymanian when you do great things but you rep your birth country when shit hits the fan on this island. Some reactions are just human normalcy and in this case she apparently has chose to stand by him, which has shocked/hurt a few people. At least it “appears” that’s the case in light of all his other shenanigans since his release and to which, she has not said a word publicly. I personally couldn’t stay with my husband through something like this (especially since he is guilty) but I understand some people take those vows to a whole other level. I’m sure she is a nice person but I do feel he should be deported and she should do the honorable thing by stepping down from her position and start life somewhere else with her husband and kids. People stomach things differently and I just couldn’t swallow this for ANY REASON.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Finally something we can agree on Who. Leave her alone peeps, she is not the one with a conviction.

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  11. Anonymous says:

    As Daaady said, let him fight the deportation order from Trinidad.

    He should have thought about his wife and children when he was sexting and also before he decided to run away from the charges brought in Cayman

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    • Anonymous says:

      Exactly, where was all his concern for his wife and kids when he ran away the first time?! He was after all, extradited back to Cayman and ironically, wants to remain here after that slap on the wrist. smdh

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  12. POWER 2 THE PEOPLE✌? says:

    People power and public pressure forced Cabinet to do the right thing. Politicians care about one thing…getting re-elected.

    The public need to use this power wisely and drive Cabinet by applying pressure to act in the public’s best interest because without that collective effort they will continue to make decisions that benefit a select few e.g. Dealing with rising violent crime as a priority and questioning government and demanding answers for the proposed building a cruise berthing port that Cayman does not need and Cayman afford.

    The people have more power than they realize use it.

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  13. Anonymous says:

    My god. So many Caymanian men are guilty of similar behavior. Send them away and there will be nothing but Canadian males here. Sorry.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Canadian makes don’t sext?

    • Anonymous says:

      Very true.
      Canadian men tend to keep it in the family, so yes, our girls should be much safer.

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    • Observer says:

      6:28: unfortunately, we cannot get rid of home-grown rubbish. That may be all the more reason we should shed what we can.

      And other countries do deport offenders at the end of their incarceration.

      I have no pity on him. And Cydonie might want to think about what is best for her children.

      Personally, as a woman, knowing what I know about how entrenched this behaviour is in men with this bent, I would cut my losses and move on.

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  14. Anon says:

    He used his family man status and his coaching to hide his dirt. He is a disgrace. I suspect his wife and children would be better off without him. If they need to see him there is skype and air travel. We have enough of our own home grown pervs without importing more and giving them status. Good riddance to bad rubbish.

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  15. Anonymous says:

    Thank you Ezzard Miller for forcing this issue through! It was his call for deportation that made the Cabinet so the right thing. Too many favors were being done by this Cabinet

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    • West bay Premier says:

      I agree that Mr. Miller played a big part in the Cabinet decision , but if the Public hadn’t shown their discuss with the Cabinet and the Premier , Miller rant would have fallen on deaf ears . l think that this just shows how much power the PUBLIC has in these kind of matters .
      That’s why I said that a Citizen petition needs to be handed in to the Governor, saying that we don’t want the undesirable in our Society .

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  16. Anonymous says:

    Why was this not done immediately on release from prison?

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    • The Constitutional Critic says:

      1. He is still serving a sentence (which means he can’t leave)
      2. He is married to a Caymanian with Caymanian children (there are legal channels this has to go through)

      Pretty simple explanation

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      • Fred the Piemaker says:

        Simple but inaccurate surely. First the article says he was released taking into account time served on remand. Doesn’t sound as if he was released on licence or is still serving any sentence. Second, whilst his marriage and kids may be a consideration the legal process is not dictated by that ( although it may be an issue for any appeal) the legal channels you refer to are the fact that the court can recommend but cabinet has to decide – no reason that couldn’t have been done prior to his release ( and the initial answer from the Premiers Office appeared to be that it had been).

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      • Anonymous says:

        3. It was a favor
        4. He was taken to
        Immigration for them to deport and someone intervened

  17. Anonymous says:

    Thank u cabinet. Thanks to all involved.

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  18. JTX says:

    Another one bites the dust another one bites the dust another one gone Yes time to reduce crime in these islands more to come!! Scumbags need to go home plain and simple we got enough problems with our own criminals.

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  19. Anonymous says:

    Good riddance!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  20. Anonymous says:

    But you can still grope a woman’s behind, because that is part of cayman culture.
    Two kids will suffer. Was one not enough.
    Jail as punishment served,
    He is not like this webster animal.

    I don’t know the guy, just reading the story and think about the kids.

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    • Anon says:

      A Father like that are not a family asset. He is a liability. He will only cause more harm.

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    • wawa says:

      he should of thought about his kids when he was molesting this 13 yr old. send him back and he can take his wife and kids with him.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Shouldn’t be allowed anywhere near them!

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    • West bay Premier says:

      7:43 pm , you sound like a Human Right Commission member, thinking that 2 kids has more rights than 15 or all Caymanian Kids , or his wife trying to defend the scum . Get him away and keep him away from all children , he can make his own decision about his own like he tried before .

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    • PPm Distress Signal says:

      Brilliant deduction 7:43pm You are absolutely right fool Webster the Caymanian got more time!! You are right again too we are thinking about our children and that’s exactly why he needs to go! You must be family to the premier who keeps preaching bout these people are here for us which is absolute bull$#@!

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    • Anonymous says:

      WTF is wrong with you?? He and Webster are the same pieces of shit. One just got opportunity to go further. There is no doubt in my mind they both would have had sex with these “underage” girls eventually. No conscience, disgusting pedophiles, they should both be castrated.

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    • Anonymous says:

      7.43am… don’t think for one minute that if we could have deported the a.. grabber we would not have done it. Track record going back years for the a… grabber is not a good one. We suffer in shame. In this case all we can do is wait on karma. And it’s a shame that he still where he is. Sad and painful for most Caymanians.

    • Observer says:

      7:43: you know not what you say.

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  21. Caymanian sports says:

    Good discussion.
    What I really love reading persons fb pages about this, is his wife, everyone saying she is a foreigner andshe should go as well. Now when she was representing Cayman she was a. Caymanian but now she’s not.
    What Ido hope is that government isn’t still paying her a salary as on of our Sports ambassadors or other any form of salary from us, aside don’t want my tax money going to her husband.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Cydonie has earned every penny of that money as she is Cayman’s most decorated, accomplished, and robbed (Marion Jones drugs cheat scandal) athlete.

      I look forward to having her around for a long time as our sports program needs the calibre of a Cydonie, and most importantly, she was achieved everything through hard work and perseverance.

      – Who

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      • Eklund says:

        Who cares what you think…….

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        • Anonymous says:

          I dunno … maybe the same people that care what every other poster here on CNS thinks?

          It is called “social media” my friend.
          Google it one day – you will be amazed, I promise.

          Idiot.

          – Whodatis

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  22. Anonymous says:

    Good riddance!

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  23. Anonymous says:

    I find the punishment for this crime to be mid-boggling. Why are sentences so harsh in the Cayman Islands? This would not happen in another country. I am afraid to go to Cayman as they might arrest me for breathing, living or being a human being.

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    • Anon says:

      Nothing more valuable than a childs safety. He is a danger to all children. Our laws are not strict enough on this subject. Thank you for not visiting.

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    • Annonymous says:

      If all the others had come forward you would be singing a different tune.

      Generally speaking people of this type repeat this type of behaviour over and over.

      Surely you don’t think it is the first. Its just the first family with the backbone to stand up and fight.

      That scumbag deserves deportation! He will repeat his vile behaviour again mark my word; we don’t need his type here. We already have many we cannot deport as they are home grown.

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    • wawa says:

      harsh in the cayman islands? do it in the u s a and you get 10 to 15 years and deportation.

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    • Anonymous says:

      We just might lock yah up and throw away the key America and the u.k are far better places to live ??You can get away with that type of sh*t there

    • Observer says:

      6:55 pm: I think we would be better off not having someone like you who cannot distinguish between “breathing” as you put it and abusing an underage girl.

      In other countries he would be registered as a sex offender.

      Please stay away.

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    • Anonymous says:

      If you are worried about our protection of the young who can’t protect themselves I suggest you never visit. Vile person.

  24. Anonymous says:

    Appeal deportation? Haul his low life self out of here, nobody wants thrash like him around. The devil in disguise. Early exit, fair wind, and safe landing.

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    • Anonymous says:

      I couldn’t agree with you more but there’s one simple problem – ECHR Article 6 guarantees him the right to fight deportation in Court and with a good lawyer he will be able to use Article 8 and possibly Article 3 to block it. The days when you could put the cuffs on a scumbag and throw them on a plane without due process are, sadly, over.

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      • Anon says:

        Hopefully common sense and justice will enter….he has not one but TWO other countries to call home. He also ran from Cayman and had to be EXTRADITED to face trial… which clearly tells he does not want to be here…

  25. West bay Premier says:

    I knew that all of the criticism and good comments that the Premier and Cabinet got would’ve changed things , but they didn’t have no intention of making this decision.

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    • West bay Premier says:

      Now what needed to be done is a Citizen petition handed in to the Governor, saying that he is a undesirable human in the Cayman Islands society .

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  26. Anonymous says:

    So, is he or is he not a Caymanian? Have I missed that detail?

    This is going to be expensive.

    May have been better to just let this husband to a Caymanian and father of 2 Caymanian children remain.

    In the end his “human rights” will dictate he is going nowhere.
    CIG knows this, but they opted to placate the masses – on their / our tab, of course.

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    • Anon says:

      And what about the “humsn rights” of innocent children?

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    • Anon says:

      He already has two nationalities. How many more does he need? He has offended his host country( Cayman) by breaking our laws. He can go back to his country of origin which I hear is Trinidad. He is nothing more than a user looking for the best living and a bunch of fools to tolerate his twisted ideas. Hope the American IRS goes after him next.

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    • Marl Karx says:

      He is not Caymanian, but like all spouses he has the right to remain here because he is married to one, he also has Caymanian children

      Yes this is going to be expensive, court cases generally always are, and there is a 99% chance he will appeal this deportation order on multiple fronts
      This deportation is not the result of any immediate and actual danger to the community of the Cayman Islands, this is the result of a “ruling” of the court of public opinion
      Which has the elected members of our government shaking in their proverbial boots
      People on Cayman don’t care about nuance or judging each occurrence based on it’s own merits, this is mob mentality
      This man is a pariah, the whole island knows who he is, I would be surprised if he even left his house without a fake mustache, glasses and a hoodie in a tinted car

      Sending him to the US where he will just be another face in the crowd doesn’t keep teenagers or kids safe,we have plenty persons who are homegrown who abuse minors and mum’s the word when it comes to them, the mob just got a whiff of this situation and made this an indefensible situation and forced the hand of all members of Government

      God help us all if the Judiciary doesn’t come the same ruling as the court of public opinion, they might just rip the courts apart brick by brick and dance on the ashes
      The people in Cayman scare me far more than some horny pervert looking for a quick teenage conquest (that’s half of the men in Cayman)

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      • Anonymous says:

        He won’t be “just another face in the crowd” in the US. Potential employers will check his background (including via Google which will promptly expose his lack of morals). Besides, our responsibility is to protect our children in Cayman before worrying about anywhere else.

        Selfish pervert should have thought of his wife and innocent kids before doing his dirt.

        In fact, he would be doing a disservice to his wife and kids by staying! Who wants to associate with him? Which parents are going to let their kids go over to play with his kids? Who is going to hire him?

        If he “wins” the right to stay, I hope his life here is absolutely miserable every day.

      • Anonymous says:

        12.36am… they are not Caymanians and never will be.. a piece of paper don’t make you a Caymanian……..!!!!!!!

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    • Anonymous says:

      Dead right. This is an easy human rights case based on Article 8 and possibly even Article 3. Article 6 gives him the right to challenge deportation in court so he for sure won’t be going anywhere in hurry whatever this story says. At the end of it he’ll stay and the MLAs will simply say, ‘We did our best.’

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  27. Anonymous says:

    Be was a mediocre 400m drug cheat. Hardly a star sprinter.

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