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Cayman’s McKeeva Bush Problem

The Royal Cayman Islands Police, which has been conducting a corruption investigation into Cayman Premier McKeeva Bush for nearly two years, has a dilemma. Even if there is sufficient evidence to warrant charges – should they be brought?

It is a sad fact of life in small jurisdictions that finding a jury impartial enough to convict a well-known local is difficult to the point of being virtually impossible – and they don’t come much better-known than Bush. It is simply a product of everyone, to some extent, knowing everyone else and it is inevitably more difficult to convict someone you know, or are at least familiar with, than a stranger.

Bringing an unsuccessful prosecution against Bush would be a nightmare scenario for those who believe in Bush’s guilt, because it would empower a man who has been a national embarrassment for years, lurching from one financial scandal to another, often in the most amateurish of circumstances.

A viable alternative is to pass on the investigation to the U. S. Department of Justice on the basis that Stanley Thomas – a property developer who was allegedly extorted by Bush – is a United States national residing in Atlanta and part or all of the US$375,000 in alleged bribes paid by Thomas to Bush took place or originated in the U. S.

Such a move should instill deep fear into Bush, given that the U. S. takes financial crime more seriously than any other jurisdiction and has the resources, expertise, determination, and judicial system to investigate and prosecute criminal actions in a manner that is worthy of the word ‘justice’, as opposed to the historically pathetic fumblings of the United Kingdom and its Overseas Territories.

If Bush is prosecuted in Cayman, he may well get off. If he is prosecuted in the U.S., he may be looking at serious prison-time.