Paint scammers fined after guilty pleas

| 06/12/2018 | 30 Comments

(CNS): Patrick Sherdan (21), David Gammell (20) and John Quilligan (22), visitors to Cayman from the UK and Ireland, dodged serious charges this week with the help of a local attorney and have since left the island. The men were accused of conning at least one local store out of cash when they painted the car park with water-based paint that washed off in the rain. Facing serious charges and under threat of more, to their relief the entire case was wrapped up Monday after they pleaded guilty to obtaining property by deception and paid fines of CI$280 plus $450 compensation to CashWiz, the victim of the scam.

Defence attorney James Stenning agreed to represent the defendants and managed to persuade the crown that the young men were not master criminals who impersonated government officials and tried to con the local business community in a line painting criminal enterprise, but three young men who made a misguided attempt at being entrepreneurs while unaware of the local laws.

The men were originally charged with obtaining property by deception, impersonating a public officer and working without a permit.

The charges emerge from a pavement painting scam, in which the men told CashWiz they were working with the National Roads Authority, which was at the time painting public roads in the area, and asked if the company would like their car park painted for a fee. The men completed the work and left, and if there hadn’t been a spell of rain, the crime might have gone unnoticed. But when the newly painted lines washed away in the downpour, CashWiz raised the alarm.

The young men were then arrested and charged, and the case was transmitted to the Grand Court because they had impersonated a public official, which carries a potential jail term. When they made their appearance crown prosecutors said they had plans to bring even more charges.

However, Stenning persuaded the crown to drop the impersonation charges and agree not to pursue any more allegations. Appearing before visiting judge, Dame Linda Dobbs, the men pleaded guilty to obtaining property by deception and working without a permit. All other charges were left on file.

In addition to the fines and compensation, the court ordered the forfeiture of equipment, which was seized by the police when the men were arrested, including a paint spraying machine, several tins and buckets of paint, extension cables, a broom, pipe and some rolls of duct tape.

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Category: Courts, Crime

Comments (30)

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  1. Uh, privilege much? says:

    So let me get this straight…3 white male adults enter this country as tourists, impersonate government employees (which is illegal), solicit employment while on the island (which is illegal), work without work permits (which is illegal), obtain property by deception (which is illegal) and all that happens when they are caught is they get the visiting judge and are ordered pay a small fine and return the money they obtained illegally? Can we really say that white privilege doesn’t exist? These 3 privileged men have been walking between raindrops their entire lives, and they get another “pass” to go along with it. No consequences. No lesson learned. They’ll just be laughing on their flight back to where their privilege can really be exercised.

    If these MEN had been local men, or Jamaican men, or Honduran men, they would have been rightly thrown in jail.

  2. Anonymous says:

    deported?…they sound like a perfect fit for the civil service!

  3. Anonymous says:

    ” managed to persuade the crown that the young men were not master criminals who impersonated government officials and tried to con the local business community in a line painting criminal enterprise, but three young men who made a misguided attempt at being entrepreneurs while unaware of the local laws.”

    Which is why they claimed to be from the NRA?

  4. Anonymous says:

    An underhand deal that went south! Both parties are guilty!

  5. Anonymous says:

    I have contracted them to paint my home during Spring Break next year.

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  6. Anonymous says:

    Not like HMP Northward has any room for these 4 anyway

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  7. Anonymous says:

    They’ll be back on work permits in 6 months

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  8. Anonymous says:

    I agree that their sentences should have been heavier and the light sentences send the wrong message and are disrepectful to the Cayman Islands. In this particular case not only is ignorance of the law no excuse, impersonating others in the act of charging a fee is also illegal in the UK and world wide.

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  9. Anonymous says:

    They left the island but we’re they deported?

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  10. Anon says:

    Sounds like your typical gypsy ‘travellers’ arrived here now. 😉

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  11. Anonymous says:

    The Pikeys are here!

    “Do yer driveway Guv’nor”. We’ll do it for you on the side and cheap but cash up front please, and you better pay us, or………”

    Next up – a caravan coming to a lot near you….

    They got off lightly as they knew exactly what they were doing, but good riddance.

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    • Anonymous says:

      They got off too lightly. They knew exactly what they were doing and are now having a good laugh at our expense, with their traveler mates in Ireland.

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  12. Anonymous says:

    But to me another big question is;
    Who are the people that would have agreed to this UNDER THE TABLE??? They are just as guilty for thinking they were going to get a ‘side job’ from the NRA!!! I mean really???
    You people still do not know the meaning of corruption.

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    • Anonymous says:

      True dat! They were brave to report the crime as they were just as guilty!

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    • Anonymous says:

      Really? I can’t say what was in their minds when the young criminals from the UK approached them. Perhaps some of them were just too trusting instread of immediately contacting the NRA. What we do know is that it was reported to the authorities.

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      • Anonymous says:

        Eire is not part of the UK!!!!! !

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      • Anonymous says:

        Really?? How do you ‘trust’ an NRA employee that is offering you a GOVERNMENT service to a member of the PUBLIC?? That’s not how that works.
        And it was only reported after it rained and the paint washed away dingaling. So they then contacted the NRA to complain about shoddy product. LOL
        Feel that burn….. I hope they didn’t get any money back. That’s how scams work. They work best on gullible greedy idiots. Even educated ones.
        PS. As was brought to your attention by 8/12 at 4:29pm, Ireland is not a part of the UK.

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    • Anonymous says:

      I’m sure that tucked away in the laws there’s provision to prosecute for encouraging someone in the commitment of a crime. It’s like stolen goods – the people who buy them are as guilty as the people handling them.

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  13. Oliver says:

    Artful Dodgers, it didn’t take much to pull the wool. Give them a medal for creativity. Besides, Caymanians & expats getting scammed and scamming each other everyday and most of the time they only get a slap on the wrist too. Hopefully there’s a lesson to be learned from this.

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  14. Anonymous says:

    How you going be impersonating a NRA worker but then you “unaware of the local law”…foolishness ! if that was us CAYMANIANS we would be in NORTHWARD !!!!!!

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  15. Anonymous says:

    This is simply a new twist to the old driveway tarmac scam that’s been going on in the UK for decades.

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  16. Anonymous says:

    They got off too easy. They are not children playing a prank, they are con artist who almost pulled off a perfect scam. Their behavior was made light of here and they have gone to continue their schemes elsewhere.

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  17. Anonymous says:

    What a waste of time and money. Should have been deported weeks ago

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  18. Anonymous says:

    only having the craic….

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