Andrew Mitchell QC Instructed to Advise the Special Prosecutor on Corruption in the Turks and Caicos Islands

Andrew Mitchell QC has been instructed to advise and, if charges are laid, lead in the prosecution of the former Premier, Parliamentarians and other high ranking public officials in the Turks and Caicos Islands for "systemic corruption" over a number of years.

In July 2008, the Foreign Affairs Select Committee published a report on the Overseas Territories, in which it raised serious concerns about alleged corruption and dishonesty by ministers and officials of the Turks and Caicos Government, including the Premier, Michael Misick, and claiming that there was a “climate of fear” on the Islands. In response, and with the support of the UK Government, the then Governor, Richard Tauwhare, established a Commission of Inquiry chaired by Sir Robin Auld to look into these allegations on 10 July.

Sir Robin's report can be found here:

Following the publication of an interim report by the Auld Commission of Enquiry on 16 March 2009, the UK Government then announced its provisional intention to suspend parts of the Constitution of the Turks and Caicos Islands for a period of up to two years. This would involve the suspension of Cabinet government and the House of Assembly and their temporary replacement by Governor’s rule. A new Constitution for the Islands came into force in August 2006.

The final report of the Auld Commission of Inquiry was handed to Tauwhare’s successor as Governor, Gordon Wetherell, on 31 May 2009 and was published in redacted form on 18 July. It confirmed that the Commission of Inquiry had found evidence of “systemic corruption.” The Misick Government resigned. On 10 August Helen Garlick was appointed by the Governor as a Special Prosecutor, heading a Special Investigation and Prosecution Team (SIPT) with a mandate to investigate specific corruption allegations.