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The Editor Speaks: Taylor’s Tempura struggles

Colin WilsonwebiNews Cayman has given more time to the scandal of Operation Tempura including Editorials on the topic than anything else we have published.

What is even more astonishing is that Tempura commenced in 2007 and iNews did not publish until four years later.

Tempura will not die despite every attempt from the top, UK’s Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Cayman’s present but soon to be ex- Governor Duncan Taylor, the current overseas security advisor Larry Covington, and Cayman’s Attorney General Samuel Bulgin to keep a lid on the high cost debacle.

Legal inquiries abound in the courts with more claims of compensation to injured parties resulting from Tempura and a judicial review hearing to decide whether to overturn Cayman’s Complaints Commissioner’s decision to allow the release of the Tempura’s papers.

Those Tempura documents must contain some very hot stuff.

With the lead investigating officer, Martin Bridger, being left out in the cold to fight the lawsuit filed against him by ex-Cayman Commissioner Stuart Kernohan, he has fought back. He sent a statement to the UK’s Metropolitan Police (the Met) saying he had been misled by Governor Stuart Jack together with evidence. He was backed up by Kernohan and former RCIPS Chief Superintendent John Jones.

It was the Met who had sent out Bridger along with a task force of British cops who became labeled as the “Sunshine Squad” as photographs started appearing in the UK’s tabloids as they seemed to spend a lot of their time on Cayman’s beaches.

Bridger, claims that Jack used position to authorise an apparently illegal search that started all the events leading up to Tempura, and never told him about it.

Bridger says in his complaint to police: “They [Mr Jack and other senior officials – Covington and Bulgin] concealed from me, and the Metropolitan Police, the fact that they knew of the circumstances of the entry and that the Governor had directly authorised it.

“As a consequence over a number of months we conducted an investigation on a totally false premise.”

The Commander of the Metropolitan Police, Allan Gibson, has written to Governor Taylor confirming Bridger’s allegations saying in his view the allegations against Jack “are serious and contain sufficient detail to warrant a criminal investigation.”

He also recommends the investigation is executed by a neutral service unconnected with the original operation.

Despite this, Governor Taylor has, as I feared in a previous Editorial, taken a slow boat to China or rather is waiting for it to arrive back. His office has said, “The Governor is still awaiting receipt of the independent legal advice which he has commissioned in response to the letter from Commander Gibson of the Metropolitan Police.”

Now Deputy Met Commissioner Craig Mackey has backed the position of Commander Gibson.

So why does the governor need independent legal advice? The two top brass of UK’s most senior police force have said the allegations are serious and have sufficient detail to warrant a criminal investigation.

On much more flimsy evidence Tempura was set in motion.

However, Governor Taylor’s struggles to stop Cayman’s public, who has and is still footing the bill for all this, knowing all the explosive information contained in the Tempura papers will soon be over. He’s leaving very soon.

Even if the boat eventually arrives he won’t be here to meet it. He will be in Mexico.

Cayman Islands’ new Governor, Helen Kilpatrick does not arrive here until September. So who will make the decision to go ahead or not with the prosecution?

Or will we just wait and wait and ……..?


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