QC argues for first sentence in quarantine breach

| 22/12/2020 | 81 Comments
Cayman News Service
Skylar Mack arrives at the Cayman Islands courthouse

(CNS): Ben Tonner QC opened arguments on behalf of Skylar Mack and Vanjae Ramgeet in the Cayman Islands Court of Appeal on Tuesday, asking the panel of judges to re-instate the magistrate’s original community service order or a more appropriate sentence for the couple’s now infamous COVID-19 quarantine breach. Tonner said the judge who overturned it considered things he should not have done and overlooked things he should have thought about.

Comparing the sentence to that imposed on a Canadian couple who were sentenced before the law was change to provide a stiffer penalty but arguably committed a greater breach, he said Mack and Ramgeet were being made an example of and the sentence was far too harsh.

Check back to CNS for more on this story.

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Category: Courts, Crime

Comments (81)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Lock up Maceva!

  2. Anonymous says:

    Fact: If the person who had committed this crime were a Caymanian from a prominent family (and by prominent, I mean anyone who has ever worked in civil service, for a statutory authority, for the police or fire department, or from the family of someone who fit that description) and they put that person in jail for this crime, the outcry about how unjust this is would be deafening.

    • Anonymous says:

      4.27 VJ’s grandmother was an MLA so your comment is untrue. He was also sentenced

    • Hubert says:

      Justice seems to have been swift for this couple but whatever happened to the 19 year old Caymanian boy who broke quarantine 3 times?

      Can somebody update me on where his case is now?

    • Big Bobo In West Bay says:

      So why has the 19 year old Caymanian boy who broke quarantine 3 times still not been charged? One rule for expats and driftwood and another for Caymanians. That is the Caymanian way.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Just change the sentence to a 100,000 fine. Whatever the hysterical people here think, Cayman is being perceived as hypocritical and vengeful by the largest country that saends tourists here. The economic damage will be huge.

    • Anonymous says:

      Not really- if you read the comments on the NYT article or other US news outlets, most Americans agree with the sentence, agree that she broke our rules and should face the consequences of her silly actions. Maybe you should go read what people really think, and not jus her Granny!! 🙄🙄

      • Anonymous says:

        Many Americans are leaving the US precisely BECAUSE of this cavalier, privileged attitude promoted by the sniveling spoilt brat in the white house. They want to live in a country that CARES about the health of it’s elderly and immune-compromised. Let Cayman NOT be another American colony.

    • Anonymous says:

      All over the news here in USA and making us look bad today.

      • Anonymous says:

        Yes I agree. It is making you Americans look like a bunch of country bumpkin red-neck trailer trash.

        Very bad indeed.

        Justice has been served and tourists coming here will now get the message.

      • Anonymous says:

        The story on the Philadelphia TV station about the movie The Firm and the Cayman Islands in the story about the American girl certainly is not helpful for our image.

        However, not sure we really care anymore.

    • BeaumontZodecloun says:

      I don’t think the economic damage will be even measurable, if at all. People want to travel to a place that is safe, however they choose to define “safe”. We are certainly staunch in our enforcement (finally!) of statutes that are applicable to Covid-19.

      There may be a sad shake of the head or two. We have established that we walk the walk. I’m sorry that Ms. Mack was the first from the U.S. It could have been anyone. I wish she had made better choices.

  4. Sacred Vessel says:

    “My Lords, my client is really really sorry. That she was caught. Please look past the dishonesty and the threat to the Islands. Think of my client’s self-entitlement. She wants to be a doctor and she is entitled to be that.”

  5. Anonymous says:

    A custodial sentence could NEVER be imposed on a tourist in Jamaica. Y’all are MAD and are justifying what is unjustifiable. Cayman is not a real place, it has been proven time and time again. Caymanians are the real step n fetch it.

    • Anonymous says:

      . . . and we know how safe Jamaica is. (Watch which way immigrants flow)

    • Anonymous says:

      A custodial sentence in Jamaica would be inhumane or cruel and unusual punishment. Her life would be in danger.

      Plus it would deprive all the corrupt people throughout the system there from getting their 10 lbs of grease. The family would pay thousands in bribes to get her home and it would be happily arranged by Jamaican authorities.

      Many of us recall numerous Caymanians who were in prison in Jamaica mysteriously getting released and returning home long before their sentence was completed.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Anyone seen Jeff Webb recently?

  7. Anonymous says:

    Those are the protocols/rules/best practice/standard operating procedure. Of course, if you think she’s got it too rough, you probably also don’t get it that everyone needs to do the right thing. Even spoiled brats from ‘Murica.

  8. Anonymous says:

    CNS, please dig in and see whom approved her travel and on what grounds. Thanks!

  9. When you visit a country, behave like a visitor Obey the rules and regulations. If Natalie Holloway had followed the rules and guidelines she might have been alive today.

    • Anonymous says:

      What? Like stay away from the locals because they might rape and murder you?

    • Anonymous says:

      So it’s HER fault she was raped and murdered. You are without a doubt the biggest troll on the internet. Crawl back in you hole.

    • Big Poppa says:

      We are all born ignorant, but one must work real hard to remain stupid (Benjamin Franklin). Your comment is by far the Moronic comment of the Year. If you’re married, consider yourself lucky there’s a bigger idiot out there. If you vote, please do us all a favour and don’t.

  10. Screw the jet skier and the bimbo says:

    They reduced the sentence to 2 months. Screw VJ and Skylar. I don’t want her allowed back on the Island EVER.

    Boy invites girlfriend to watch his stupid jet ski race. Oops, girlfriend realizes that she has to see boy friend but she didn’t come down soon enough to allow for quarantine.

    Boo hoo. Boyfriend and girlfriend connive and conspire so he can show off his stupid jet skiing while completely disregarding the rest of the Island’s population.

    Boo hoo. Girlfriend calls and says its hurting me. She discards it and boyfriend picks her up and brings her to his 2 minute claim to fame on a jet ski.

    Boo hoo. Boyfriend and girlfriend get caught and get away with it. Public is outraged so they are re-sentenced to one-eighth and one-fifth the jail time and fines they were eligible to receive.

    Boo hoo. Grandma spoils little bimbo and begins a media campaign in the USA to get her pwetty lil angel out of the unfair Cayman Islands.

    Pathetic. Judge reduces sentences to 2 months each.

    • Telly says:

      Nicely summarised!

    • BeaumontZodecloun says:

      The only thing I take issue with is the “bimbo”. I’m not certain that you or anyone else has earned the right to throw labels on those incarcerated here.

      When she is released, her time is done. She made a bad call and is being rightfully punished for it. She risked everyone here. When she is done, it’s over.

  11. Anonymous says:

    She is not criminal Remove handcuffs!!!

  12. Donnie says:

    It is great to see nothing in Cayman has changed. Throw the book at some while others get away with everything. Let’s throw the book at Skylar and the Canadian couple. Yet this clown “Caymanian” gets nothing. Way to go Cayman justice. https://caymannewsservice.com/2020/12/rules-bent-for-escapee-teen-in-isolation/

  13. Anonymous says:

    Why drag her by handcuffs? She is not going to run!

    • Hard Liner says:

      She is not being dragged just guided. and she already ran from isolation! In my view they are both getting-off lightly and reading the comments in the Huff Post their US countrymen agree.

    • Anonymous says:

      Why treat her different from any other convict? Thats a good way to get accused of bias and unfair treatment. (Leaving aside any assessment of risk. Because people do silly things sometimes.)

    • Anonymous says:

      You sure about that?

    • Anonymous says:

      The handcuffs look great on American TV and print media. U no mess with us tough people or we take off your head.

    • Anonymous says:

      Um…yes, she is a self-confessed and convicted criminal.

    • Anonymous says:

      Oh, the irony in this statement (although, on reflection, I am guessing this is tongue and cheek 🙂

    • Anonymous says:

      She is quite literally a convicted criminal for breaching a “do not run” order. So, yeah, treating her as if she is going to run is not farfetched.

  14. Anonymous says:

    When I’m in another man’s country I have to obey the law or face the consequences! Why should these people in prison us by locking us down like before! Adjust the LAW TO $100,000KYD & 6 MONTHS IN JAIL!!!

    • Anonymous says:

      Law does not equal moral/ethical.

      They kill women who are raped in certain middle eastern countries. Doesnt make it right.

      Cayman government is authoritarian and a disgrace, and its even more disgraceful that so many low IQ locals dont realize this.

      • Anonymous says:

        Retrip, is it you? You repeat the $hit you posted on Trip Advisor and was rightfully called nuts.

      • Anonymous says:

        Listen, we don’t want trailer trash here nor illiterate, entitled and overindulged brats who cannot obey strict orders.

        What you have to understand is that Cayman’s formula has worked. We have kept our community safe and unlocked due to hard sacrifices made early on.

        We are surrendering our freedom for two fops.

    • Anonymous says:

      Persons* not mans

  15. jay says:

    no more SKY Larking

  16. Anonymous says:

    ruining them both…they should be ashamed…let um go man…this the banana republic

    • Anonymous says:

      If this is such a banana republic, haul your sorry ass out of the country. I will pay for your ticket. This is probably the best place you have ever lived. More than likely you came here in a drawse full of holes and skid marks and only the shirt on your back.

  17. Anonymous says:

    Meanwhile Mac beats women in public and gets a laughable punishment and continues in his job as speaker of the clowns. HAHAHAHAHA!!!!

    • Anonymous says:

      Yes! Mac get off lightly for the crime he committed.No argument here.

      The same can be said for these two. After all, the maximum sentence could have been 2 yrs + 10K.
      Maybe you could consider that only one of the two examples could have potentially send our thriving post “lock-down” economy back behind bars. If she was a Jamaican,Honduran, Colombian( you get my drift) National you probably would not have given the story a read.

    • Anonymous says:

      Agree. BUT boy and girl still deserve their punishment! What needs to happen now is people need to put the same energy they had into their case and hope something greater is done about MAC.

  18. PhenomAnon says:

    Someone was on Rooster this morning saying that a custodial sentence is far too harsh to impose on Skylar, because of the negative impact it will have on her future medical career. I almost spit my coffee out of my nose when I heard that.

    I am a parent. From the day my son could understand the words coming out of my mouth, I have taught him that his actions today will have an impact on his life tomorrow. When social media and the internet became prevalent in his life, I drilled into his head that anything that he says or does today will follow him around forever on the internet. I’ve taught him to choose the people he associates himself with wisely. Stay away from those who do wrong, as he could be seen as being guilty by association. Always assume that someone is watching. What you do in the dark better damn well be something you’d want seen in the daylight. You know, the stuff parents tell their kids to keep them out of trouble.

    I’m sorry (not sorry), but I have zero sympathy for Skylar’s future career. Had SHE been concerned about HER future career, she would have done the right thing. If she hadn’t assumed that she wouldn’t get caught, she’d have done the right thing. Had she considered that bursting into tears and saying she was sorry would not get her off the hook, she’d have done the right thing.

    What aspect of her upbringing, what people in her life, what influence that she associates herself with, what is it that made her think that there would not be consequences if she got caught? What ever that thing is, THAT is the problem.

    • Anonymous says:

      Outstanding comment!! A thousand thumbs up.

    • Anonymous says:

      Absolutely, and thanks for being a good parent! Saw Miss Prissy’s granny on one of the news shows in the States, listing a litany of mitigation, including: she’s young and made a mistake because of that, she is a good girl and is responsible in every other part of her life, yadda-yadda-yadda, and THEN said: “I’m not making excuses for her.” If that’s how this princess was raised, no wonder she feels so entitled and is so irresponsible.

    • Anonymous says:

      Realistically, if she had just quietly served her sentence then returned to her Winter semester as a pre-med student at a middling university, she probably would not have had her career affected at all.

      What will affect her career as a doctor is:

      1. Her clear stupidity. She is only pre-med and there is no indication that she has the brains to get into med school. Pre-med means general science and is not indicative of any particular talent. Her actions show undoubtable stupidity.

      2. Her grandma ensuring that anytime you google her name, this will appear. A couple of Cayman news articles might not have much Search Engine Optimisation to appear high in the search engines if her grandma hadn’t gone spouting off her mouth to all the American news. If she did some good work during the four years of her degree with some good news coverage, the Cayman news articles might slip pretty low on the search list. Extend that to ten years when she might be looking for a job for her residency or as a doctor, and Cayman’s news could be even lower. No one would ever request a police clearance certificate from a place you once went on holiday for one week.

      And, you sound like a good parent.

      • DWT says:

        I’m fully on your side but can we please not belittle the pre-med path as if it’s a very simple path to take? Anyone who took organic chemistry will tell you the nightmares. Pre-med is actually very challenging as it will weed out those without talent. In my organic chemistry 2 class, at the midterm mark after the exam literally half the class had to drop.

        • BeaumontZodecloun says:

          Agree. I was not pre-med, but took three years of Chem. It was brutal, at least for me. Anyone who can cross that barrier has sand.

    • Anonymous says:

      Maybe your son can enter politics. God m pea we need some ethics there.

  19. Anonymous says:

    The lawyer’s argument is weak.
    Hope they get even more time for wasting the courts time.

    CNS: To be fair, this is just a teaser story with BT’s opening line, not his full submission. The rest will be reported later.

  20. Anonymous says:

    They locked the wrong Mac(k) up!

  21. Anonymous says:

    There has to be some form of custodial sentence. Otherwise, many people will simply risk getting fined if caught. That is why the penalties were increased.

    This is precedent setting; any future penalties for breaches will be measured in what is decided here.

    So dont fall for the pity party.

  22. Anonymous says:

    Meanwhile Bush won’t be inconvenienced for an hour in a jail cell.

  23. Anonymous says:

    Given the travel waiver contracts signed with Travel Time both as certified traveler and host, and in light of subsequent coordinated international media campaign by her camp to pervert our judicial system, fabricate the existence of a Cayman USA Embassy, in regards to a sentence that was just one sixth of the prescribed sentence guidance, I think we should INCREASE sentence to two sixths, INCREASE fine to 50% (KYD$5000) and see if there is any contrition, or good behavior that follows. An appeal can go both ways. Grandma has not been helping.

  24. Anonymous says:

    Honorable Bush, please intercede to correct this travesty of justice. Seems the Canadians get special treatment around hear. What a shame.

    • Anonymous says:

      Where is the public outcry to demanding Pascal and his partner face the same fate as Miss Mack and Mr. Ramgeet when they return to these shores (which they will)? We can make laws retroactive when it’s convenient. No special treatment for Canadians!

    • Anonymous says:

      They were charged AFTER the new increase in penalty was introduced. Had the Canadian couple been caught after the increase they would have been made an example of as well. People need to quit bringing them up.

      • Anonymous says:

        So it’s about making an example of people? If so why not lock up all quarantine breakers? Without a consistent message, there is no message at all!!!

    • Anonymous says:

      I choked when I read ‘HONOURABLE Bush’!

  25. Free VJ and Skylar says:

    Free them up and put Mac in the lockup

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