(CMR) Approximately 10 Cuban migrants are remanded in Cayman Islands prisons after repeatedly escaping the immigration detention center. The prisoners who have been charged with escaping lawful custody were remanded to the Cayman Islands Prison Service when they appeared in court.
Deputy Governor Franz Manderson, while talking to Sandy Hill on The Cold Hard Truth on Wednesday morning, said stringent actions had to be taken against those repeatedly leaving the immigration facility. He explained:
“The reason why there are Cubans in prison and not at the detention center is because of the repeated escapes that we have been having from the immigration detention center. We have taken a very hard line, and to stop people from constantly escaping, we have prosecuted them.”
Mr. Manderson was responding to concerns about a Cuban migrant who is in prison and is reportedly suicidal and suffering from PTSD. A concerned prisoner called TCHT on Wednesday, expressing concerns that this prisoner was suffering and the guards do not speak Spanish.
According to the prisoner, the Cuban had attempted suicide before and expressed wanting to be deported, but nothing has been done so far. He allegedly wrote a letter stating that he wanted to be deported.
Mr. Manderson, who said he would look into the situation, also revealed that 15 Cubans were repatriated on Tuesday. He said had it been known that that prisoner wanted to return to Cuba, he could have been on that flight.
If he had applied for asylum, he would need to indicate that he wishes to withdraw that application, the Deputy Governor said.
Under 200 Cuban migrants are still in the Cayman Islands, with a large group having left illegally recently, Mr. Manderson revealed. This means they left without informing Customs and Border Control. The CBC is trying to ascertain where these migrants went.