The Cayman Islands Chamber of Commerce Tuesday said the arrest of Premier Mckeeva Bush on suspicion of theft in connection with financial irregularities relating to the alleged misuse of a government credit card, demonstrates the British Overseas Territory's robust law enforcement and anti corruption systems.
The Chamber of Commerce unequivocally supports all actions by law enforcement officials to root out any unethical behaviour that may damage the reputation of the Cayman Islands as a leading international financial centre and as a quality jurisdiction to conduct business and
invest, Chamber president Chris Duggan said in a statement.
The Royal Cayman Islands Police Service (RCIPS) said Bush, who had recently returned from London where he had been attending the Joint Ministerial Council meeting between the British Overseas Territories and the United Kingdom government, had been arrested at his home.
In a statement, the RCIPS said that Bush, who is the leader of the United Democratic Party (UDP) and serving his seventh term in the Legislative Assembly, has also been detained on breach of trust, abuse of office and conflict of interest, contrary to S13, S17 and S19 of the Anti-Corruption Law 2008 respectively.
He is also detained in connection with the alleged importation of explosive substances without valid permits on or before February 2012.
It would be inappropriate for the RCIPS to make any further comment in relation to these matters at this time. Further updates will be made available in due course, a police spokesperson said.
The private sector said that the arrest of the premier on alleged breach of trust, abuse of office and theft charges demonstrates Cayman's robust law enforcement and anti-corruption systems and the Islands'
intolerance with any alleged unethical behaviour or corruption even at the highest level of political office.
Duggan said that the RCIPS's Financial Crime Unit investigation leading up to today's arrest has been ongoing for several months and the economy has continued to perform robustly providing quality services and products to the world's financial markets, international visitors and investors.
We are wholly confident that that same level of integrity and service will continue as the case works its way through the judicial system,' he added.
In late 2010 the RCIPS began an investigation into Bush relating to alleged financial irregularities dating from October 2004.
In April, Premier Bush acknowledged publicly for the first time that he was under investigation by the police but insisted that he had done nothing wrong and the allegations against him were baseless.
In a statement, issued then through his press secretary Charles Glidden, Premier Bush said that the so called allegations are baseless and that he has done nothing illegal whatsoever.