High risk inmate moved to UK

| 24/05/2020 | 36 Comments
armed home invasion, Elmer Wright, Cayman News Service
Elmer Wright

(CNS): Elmer Wright (26), who was recently given a life sentence with a minimum tariff of 21-years in connection with a violent home invasion, was transferred to the UK at the weekend. Wright, who is considered a high risk prisoner, was taken on the British Airways air-bridge on Saturday, which had been arranged to help 280 Filipinos reach Manila via London. Officials said the inmate was moved in the interest of national safety and security.

The transfer of Wright comes in the wake of false allegations of prison rioting at Northward after two inmates tested positive for the COVID-19 virus and prisoners were confined to their cells. But CNS is aware that the move had been planned for sometime. Wright has long been considered a threat to prison and community safety in general. He was also accused of seriously intimidating witnesses in his case.

Wright was only the second convicted criminal who had not committed murder to be given an indeterminate life sentence. And he is now the third inmate to be transferred to the UK to serve his time there.

Wright was convicted of several offenses relating to a horrifying, violent home invasion that took place in Prospect in June 2017, including robbery, possession of a gun and various other related crimes. Wright already has a long rap sheet with criminal convictions, including those for robbery and firearms offences stretching back to when he was still a teenager.

When he was just 15 years old Wright, who is a Caymanian, was involved in an armed robbery at a gas station in Bodden Town where he fired on police during his escape. Despite the lengthy jail term of nine years for that crime, just ten months after his release he was involved in the crime spree which resulted in the violent home robbery.

It is not clear how much of his remaining tariff Wright will be required to serve in the UK before he becomes eligible for parole in 2038. Officials did not state which prison Wright was destined for, but the two previous inmate transfers were first taken to HMP Belmarsh, a high security, category A men’s facility in South London.

Late last year concerns were raised about the level of gang violence in the prison, understood to be fuelled by drug dealing inside the walls.

Osbourne Douglas and his brother, Justin Ramoon, were the first two Northward prisoners to be transferred there after conviction. The brothers, who are serving life sentences for the murder of Jason Powery outside a bar in George Town in July 2015, were sent to the UK some three years ago.

Both have since been moved from Belmarsh and CNS understands they were transferred to separate facilities. They have also challenged the transfer in the courts, but as a result of a number of closed door legal hearings it is not clear if the case continues to progress.

According to the release this weekend, Wright was transferred to the UK prison system under the same 19th century, archaic legislation, the Colonial Prisoners Removal Act of 1884, as the brothers.

While just two prisoners at Northward have tested positive for the current coronavirus, the UK prison system has seen a much greater rate of transmission. It has also failed to release any significant numbers of inmates, leaving the facilities overcrowded and vulnerable to the spread of the virus.

Figures from the UK Ministry of Justice released last Monday indicated that 565 members of staff and 422 prisoners tested positive at that point in 74 facilities.


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Category: Crime, Prison

Comments (36)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    He was involved in a voilent home invasion. So were there others involved wirh that as well? If so what about them? Are they Jamaicans too who the Government is sheltering and comforting here? They should have sent those monsters that killed our poor innocent champion of women rights leader Estella to a place like that and made them lanquish there instead of housing them here. Not our young Caymanians. When they sent the brothers there they said they were sending them there for protection. But it could not have been for their protection. More like sending them there to become really hardened criminals.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Why would he get ten years in prison at fifteen anyway? He was just a child. It should have been those adults he was with that should have gotten that time and more for taking a minor there with them to do that. I remember long ago it was just the white expats that was favoured over us Caymanians. Nowadays it’s all the expats. Getting all the jobs and preferential treatment instead of us the local people. Where else in the world is this happening? I thought our Government was finally beginning to look out for us Caymanians now because of this coronavis and all but it seems like that is still not the case. So sad!

  3. Anonymous says:

    At fifteen he shoots at a policeman? Mostly likely he was with someone older than himself who led him astray right? Wasn’t he the same one who was with two Jamaicans who robbed the gas station or went to do so and they had him shoot at the police? I do not know why the Government is sending away our young men to prison in the UK when they should be allowed to stay at home here where their family can visit them. I bet their poor mothers can’t even go to the UK to visit them and that has to be the most cruel punishment of all. Sending them where there are hardened criminals with seemingly no chance of rehabilitation. Our Government should be ashamed of themselves and in the maintime they are importing all these criminals from other countries here and giving them jobs as police, prison officers and other top jobs in Government. They should be sending back some of those that are in prison here to their own country to serve their sentence there or send them to the UK instead of our own.

  4. Anonymous says:

    You people are heartless. He is somebody’s child. He is also a Caymanian and should be here to serve his sentence.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Good article, but hopefully the appearance of the word ‘archaic’ was a typo and what you meant to write was ‘highly effective’.

    The Colonial Prisoners Removal Act of 1884 is an excellent piece that has proved effective over a long period of time. In that regard it is something like surviving portions of Magna Carta, the 1689 Bill of Rights, and the centuries of common law that continue to protect us, including the concept of the rule of law itself.

    I hope that the Colonial Prisoners Removal Act continues to be with us as long as people like Wright exist in Cayman. I also wish that it would be used more often.

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  6. Anonymous says:

    I don’t know this young man by any stretch of the imagination but ever since I saw his/picture crime/ I shed a tear and prayed for him. Sadly he has been lost in the ‘jungle of life’. I hope he will draw near to God, a repent.

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  7. Anonymous says:

    Regardless of the crime that was comitted, he is a Caymanian, let him serve his time home.

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  8. Anonymous says:

    Yep! 100% effectiveness at preventing reoffending.

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  9. Anonymous says:

    Yep no crime in US states that have Capital sentences, yawn

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  10. Anonymous says:

    I wonder if the uk government will be charging the Cayman Islands $2600 every 2 weeks for his lodgings !!

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    • Anonymous says:

      Thats even IF they had a place for us to lodge!
      Seems it’s full all the time, no one allowed back on the two MIA flights next month.
      What a joke!

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  11. Anonymous says:

    They need to transfer a few more.

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  12. Anonymous says:

    I thought no one was getting off the flight in London?

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  13. Anonymous says:

    Most shocking thing about this is the apparent 10 month sentence served after firing at police during an armed robbery. Should have been 10 years minimum.

    He will land in a whole different universe at Belmarsh. Northward is to Belmarsh as Disney World is to Alcatraz.

    He had better learn quickly to keep his head down and have an open mind about his fellow prisoners’ attitudes. Stupid boy is going to learn the extremely hard way, otherwise he is unlikely to come home other than in cargo.

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    • Anonymous says:

      He was a kid and served his sentence. Keep it moving.

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    • Anonymous says:

      You talking shit, the UK has more rights for prisoners than even Cayman plus they count night and day which means he’ll be out way before 2038.

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      • Anonymous says:

        You have clearly never been in or anywhere near Belmarsh.

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        • Anonymous says:

          Indeed. The screws are the least of your worries and there are no Norman Stanley Fletchers or Lennie Godbers in there. Just extremely dangerous, extremely violent, extremely prejudiced, repeat offenders.

          A bit like the Shawshank Redemption – you spend decades wallowing in shit – but there is no redemption at the end of it.

          This dumb mofo is going to discover how soft he really is.

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          • Anonymous says:

            And become a hardened criminal right? With no hope of rehabilitation. If he was your son would you want that for him?

    • Anon says:

      Could that 10 months be an error? The robbery and firing upon the police was when he was 15, served 10 years and committed the home invasion shortly after release (he’s 26 now). That would add up. There’s no way to just get 10 months after shooting at police.

      CNS: Yes sorry, it was an editing error.

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    • Jotnar says:

      Read it again. Original sentence was not 10 months – article says he committed the home invasion 10 months after release for the previous robbery and shooting. In fact, original sentence was 16 years rather than the 10 you suggest, reduced to 9 on appeal.

      The problem here is not the original sentence, but releasing prisoners at a fraction of their sentencing. Wright only served just over 6 years of his original sentence, even though he was convicted of assaulting a prison officer during that time. Hardly a model prisoner.

      CNS:
      In defence of the commenter, it was my editing that confused the matter, which has been fixed now.

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  14. Anonymous says:

    This is a tremendous achievement during a pandemic. Thank you Officals and UK Government.

    Let this be a lesson to other one would be criminals.

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  15. Anonymous says:

    Another example of a Caymanian who fell through the cracks.

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    • Anonymous says:

      He had a jackhammer and made his own cracks.. Stop making excuses for this man. He is a vile person and a disgrace to the nation. He has only himself to blame. No one “let him down” SMH

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  16. Anonymous says:

    Keep him locked up

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  17. Anonymous says:

    Think he’ll find a UK jail a bit different to Northward. He ain’t no daddy there.

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  18. Anonymous says:

    Lol good luck! Every body is a bad man until they meet one

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  19. Anonymous says:

    At least now he can hunt wabbits

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