Cayman Announces Immigration Crackdown

By Editorial 08 September, 2010

The Cayman Islands has announced that 87 persons have availed themselves of the Immigration Department’s amnesty, taking advantage of the opportunity to leave the islands in July without repercussions.

The conclusion of the amnesty will now lead to an enforcement crackdown to ensure that foreign residents have legal paperwork.

As of September 2, immigration officers had arrested 45 persons for more than 50 offences. Fines amounting to KYD24,650 (USD30,000) have been handed down to offenders and their employers.

Of these 45, 17 persons were arrested for overstaying, with the longest period of overstay being 22 months. The others were arrested for illegal employment, working without a permit, and for working outside the terms of their permit. Other offences were making false representations, causing another person to overstay, having an altered passport and obstruction.

Those facing enforcement action are from various countries, including Jamaica, Honduras, the Caymans, Canada, America, Britain, the Philippines, India, the Netherlands and South Africa.

Department officials report that the initiative allowed 67 male and 20 female overstayers to depart without prosecution. By nationality, 50 were from Jamaica, 10 were from the United States, four from Canada, and three or fewer overstayers were from Honduras, Nicaragua, India, South Africa, Colombia, Cuba, the Philippines, Costa Rica, Guyana, Panama, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, and the United Kingdom.

The maximum penalty for overstaying is a fine of KYD20,000 and imprisonment of up to five years. The penalties for work permit offences range from KYD5,000 to KYD15,000, and imprisonment of up to one year.

The Immigration Department said it is continuing to monitor local businesses and those departing the Cayman Islands for immigration offences.

Tags: Individuals | Expatriates | Business | Law | International Financial Centres (IFC) | Cayman Islands | Enforcement | Offshore | Penalties |


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