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Guilty plea brings abrupt end to theft trial

What had been anticipated to be the beginning of a lengthy, long-delayed trial ended only minutes after it begun on Monday (21 November) when a woman pleaded guilty to a revised charge of stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars from her employer, The Security Centre, between 2010 and 2013.

Patti Jane Ebanks was originally facing two-dozen counts of a variety charges, accusing her of embezzling nearly $1 million from her employer. That indictment was replaced Monday with a new single count of theft, charging Ms. Ebanks with stealing $420,281.24.

Crown counsel prosecutors said they reviewed each cheque requisition associated with the original charges and gave the benefit of the doubt to the defendant when possible, leading to the reduced dollar amount attached to the new charge.

“A very sensible approach, if I may say so, so that a jury doesn’t have to sort it out” said Justice Dame Linda Dobbs, referring to tens of thousands of documents collected and reviewed as part of the case.

The Justice ordered a Social Inquiry and the preparation of a psychiatric report, and she asked Ms. Ebanks to cooperate fully and to be mindful of an incentive for credit against her sentence which will be levied on 2 February 2017. Her bail was continued.

About the author

Patrick Kreitlow

Patrick Kreitlow

Pat Kreitlow joined the Cayman 27 staff in October 2015. For nearly a decade, Pat was a familiar presence in living rooms across western Wisconsin where he was a reporter and nightly news anchor at WEAU-TV. He later served his neighbors as a state senator. When he and his wife Sharry became “empty nesters,” they moved to Grand Cayman in early 2014. They have two daughters and two grandsons.

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