Border patrol staffer arrested for real estate con

| 09/02/2019
Cayman News Service

RCIPS detention centre in George Town

(CNS): A 26-year-old woman who is employed by the new Customs and Border Control Agency was arrested at the headquarters Thursday on suspicion of obtaining property by deception in connection with the transfer of real estate belonging to a vulnerable individual, the RCIPS Financial Crimes Unit have reported. The woman’s 56-year-old mother has also been arrested on suspicion of the same offence. Both women have since been bailed in the case and the new CBC unit confirmed that their staff member, who previously worked for customs, has been placed on required leave, though the alleged crime is unrelated to her job.

The police issued a statement rebuking a local social media site for naming and publishing a picture of the individual. They said that naming those arrested “negatively impacts on the presumption of innocence” and could endanger the fairness of the court process, despite the fact that if any case goes to court the individuals are named.

There is no law that prevents the media, either mainstream or social, from naming arrested people. However, in the interests of justice it is usual for the press to refrain from naming any individual arrested until a charge has been laid, unless that person is a leading member of the community or the revelation of the identity is judged to be in the public interest for other reasons.

This is because if no charges are ultimately laid, there is the danger that the publicity could taint the reputation of a completely innocent individual.

Nevertheless, the police targeted the local gossip blog Cayman Marl Road for not only naming the customs staffer but also for criticisms of Ingrid Spence, the officer who made the arrest.

The police said the details about the arrest in the blog post were inaccurate. CMR had related some details from the suspect that she had been duped by the police about wanting to meet with her but instead they came to her place of work and made the arrest.

The RCIPS stated, “The arrest in question was lawful and executed in a professional manner, in alignment with police policy and procedures.”

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Category: Crime, Police

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