A lonely death in paradise

Bermuda's crime- free good life has been shattered by the death of Liz Cadell. Now friends are asking: did her boyfriend ignore her cries for help? And could he have saved her?

Among those who know, or believe they know, Bermuda is shorthand for the good life. Sun. Crystal blue water. Vanilla-coloured sand. Tax haven. Sixty thousand residents, and barely a crime. A slice of paradise colonised by Britain, complete with Marks & Spencer, red letter boxes, and a pub called the Robin Hood.

Talk about Bermuda with any one of her 8,000 British expatriates and you will also hear nothing but enthusiasm. For ambitious bankers, journalists, and businessmen prepared to work hard, there are glistening rewards. The career trajectory can be rapid, particularly for British journalists, a successful stint on Bermuda's daily newspaper The Royal Gazette is often viewed as a stepping stone to Fleet Street.

Berkshire-born Liz Cadell knew this when she arrived in Bermuda in 1988 to work on the Gazette and its sister weekly, The Mid Ocean News. Regarded as bright, smart and ebullient, Cadell, a keen sportswoman, was also considered a sharp reporter and sub-editor. "She was very down to earth, pragmatic, a lot of fun," said a colleague who asked not to be identified. "I sat next to Liz for a few years. She was a very vivacious girl. I never saw a darker side, and in the newspaper business you work very closely."

She appeared that way to everyone who knew her. And yet on May 31 last year Liz Cadell, aged 33, took 150 aspirin and died of an overdose.

Her death followed the end of her engagement to British police officer Tony Bukhari. Last week, just over a year after her death, Bukhari, 32, was charged with manslaughter by negligence.

The woman who made a living writing about the exploits of others became a headline, and the story has been the subject of talk among the tight- knit expat community.

At the core of all discussion is not just the tragic loss of Cadell, but the extraordinary legal issues surrounding the charge against Bukhari. He has not been charged with committing a pre-meditated crime, but rather, failing to act. Police allege that in his failure to respond to Cadell's calls or seek medical help, he is culpable.

The story of Liz Cadell begins ten years ago, when she arrived in Bermuda to work as a reporter, and carved a name for herself covering sports stories.

Cadell, a keen tennis player and netballer, (she captained the Gazette tennis team), was, said colleagues, well regarded among the sporting community.

After meeting Bukhari, the Cheshire born son of a Pakistani father and English mother, she moved in with him in 1991.

"They were a really happy couple," says her Gazette colleague, who added that she had never heard, as was subsequently reported, that Liz's relatives did not fully accept him. "The couple were popular, but there weren't part of Bermuda's party-goer scene. They socialised amongst his friends and hers."

The British expat scene functions on two levels in Bermuda: professional class (reporters, bankers, police) and entrepreneurs who relocate to Bermuda as a tax haven.

Among the former, Cadell and Bukhari were well liked. Life for Brits in the UK's oldest colony is comfortable (although they are touchy about reports which described them as "spoilt"), and despite being 600 miles from the US east coast, Bermuda's culture and economy are quintessentially British.

According to friends, both Bukhari and Cadell felt very at home there, and Bob Anes, a Gazette sub-editor and close friend of Cadell's, said the couple were devoted to each other.

"They were very affectionate. I saw them at a party a year before her death and he never left her side. Tony was very attentive to Liz."

Her colleague adds: "When I knew Liz, her relationship with Tony seemed to be going smoothly. There was no trouble until the last year, when it became clear things might not be all she wanted, but then all relationships ebb and flow. I know she wanted to marry Tony, return to London and work in antiques. She did not plan to return to newspapers."

In fact, unbeknown to Bukhari, in the year before her death Cadell began an affair with a Gazette colleague. "Most people knew of the affair but tried to keep it quiet because they knew she was living with Tony."

According to a report submitted to the inquest in March 1997, Bukhari learned of the affair after the couple became engaged. "Whilst on holiday in May 1997, Miss Cadell confided to Bukhari that she had been involved in an affair for approximately one year. Bukhari's response was to call off the wedding."

Friends have said that Cadell did become more quiet at work, but they did not ask questions. "I was not aware the wedding was off, she was private about those matters," said Anes.

Then Cadell was found naked and dead in the bedroom of her Harvey Hill Road flat on May 31, with part of the phone cord around her neck. Police records revealed a note was left which read: "I know I've let you down badly, I don't think there is any way I can make it up to you. So perhaps it is best if I disappear and let you get on with your life without me."

When Bukhari was later interviewed by police, he told them he had finished a shift at midnight, gone drinking, then to the home of another friend, where he stayed until 4.30am, before returning home. He told police that he had woken at 11am, and Cadell had told him she had swallowed 150 aspirin at 8.30am. He advised her to drink salt water and make herself vomit. He said she seemed to have recovered, and they made love at 1pm, after which he went out jogging. In his police statement he said that on his return, Cadell was dead.

It emerged that Cadell had paged Bukhari three times during the night, and he had not responded. At the inquest parts of Bukhari's version of events were disputed.

Dr Valerie Rao, a pathologist with the Dade County Medical Examiners office in Florida, gave evidence that Bukhari's claim that he made love to Cadell at 1pm could not be correct. "She was dead by one o'clock in the afternoon." And she added signs of aspirin poisoning are obvious. "If she had been taken to the hospital, she could have survived."

The inquest was also told that Bukhari had completed a first aid course and knew not to induce vomiting in cases of overdose.

The court learned that Bukhari attempted suicide after Cadell's death. Friend and police officer David Allen testified that he rushed Bukhari to hospital earlier this year after he swallowed 40 pills and left a suicide note in his police barracks accusing authorities of "stitching me up".

"Ever since Liz's death he just wasn't his normal self," said his friend. "He used to mention how upset he was. He couldn't believe Liz had done this and he found it difficult to accept that she wasn't going to be around."

Before the inquest concluded however, the Attorney General decided to charge Bukhari with manslaughter by negligence. Bukhari was charged in Hamilton Magistrates Court, bailed on US$10,000, ordered to surrender his passport, and report to police three times a week. A trial is expected to be scheduled for late in the year.

Unable to return to Britain, Bukhari is also without employment. His lawyer Delroy Duncan confirmed that Bermuda police have not renewed his contract.

Duncan, who is also a British expatriate, said his client's defence rests on the question of whether Bukhari owed Liz Cadell a duty of care in the circumstances. He maintains that Bukhari was not liable, and was therefore not guilty of neglect.

Duncan said today Bukhari is bearing up well, considering he faces up to 20 years in prison for failing to respond to his girlfriend's pages.

"He has been depressed, distraught. He considered their relationship a good one, and he still intended to marry her. He told me he wanted a break, and did intend to renew the relationship."

Cadell, too, had been intending to marry. She had changed her will to make Bukhari the beneficiary to her pounds 200,000 estate. The will was later ruled invalid and her estate goes to her family.

As for the expat community galvanised by this case, they are, despite the busy rumour mill, not taking sides, according to Gary Sheppard, owner of the Robin Hood pub. "I believe the Brits here know there is a discrepancy in the stories, and all they really want to know is the truth."

Arts and Entertainment
Reach for the sky: there are around 250 new buildings of 20-plus storeys planned for London alone, some 80 per cent of them residential
architecture
Arts and Entertainment
Natural beauty: Aidan Turner stars in the new series of Poldark
television
Arts and Entertainment
Shining star: Maika Monroe, with Jake Weary, in ‘It Follows’
filmReview: The ingenious film will intrigue, puzzle and trouble audiences by turns
Arts and Entertainment
Taylor Swift won Best International Solo Female (Getty)

Brits 2015
Arts and Entertainment

Brits 2015
Arts and Entertainment

Oscars 2015 Mexican filmmaker uses speech to urge 'respect' for immigrants

Arts and Entertainment
The Oscar nominations are due to be announced today

Oscars 2015 Bringing you all the news from the 87th Academy Awards

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment

ebooksNow available in paperback
Arts and Entertainment

ebooks
Arts and Entertainment
Lloyd-Hughes takes the leading role as Ralph Whelan in Channel 4's epic new 10-part drama, Indian Summers

TV Review

The intrigue deepens as we delve further but don't expect any answers just yet
Arts and Entertainment
Jason Segal and Cameron Diaz star in Sex Tape

Razzies 2015 Golden Raspberry Awards 'honours' Cameron Diaz and Kirk Cameron

Arts and Entertainment
The Oscars ceremony 2015 will take place at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles
Oscars 2015A quiz to whet your appetite for tonight’s 87th Academy Awards
Arts and Entertainment
Sigourney Weaver, as Ripley, in Alien; critics have branded the naming of action movie network Movies4Men as “offensive” and “demographic box-ticking gone mad”.
TVNaming of action movie network Movies4Men sparks outrage
Arts and Entertainment
Sleater Kinney perform at the 6 Music Festival at the O2 Academy, Newcastle
musicReview: 6 Music Festival
Arts and Entertainment
Sleater Kinney perform at the 6 Music Festival at the O2 Academy, Newcastle
musicReview: 6 Music Festival
News
Kristen Stewart reacts after receiving the Best Actress in a Supporting Role award for her role in 'Sils Maria' at the 40th annual Cesar awards
people
News
A lost Sherlock Holmes story has been unearthed
arts + ents Walter Elliot, an 80-year-old historian, found it in his attic,
Arts and Entertainment
Margot Robbie rose to fame starring alongside Leonardo DiCaprio in The Wolf of Wall Street

Film Hollywood's new leading lady talks about her Ramsay Street days

Arts and Entertainment
Right note: Sam Haywood with Simon Usborne page turning
musicSimon Usborne discovers it is under threat from the accursed iPad
Arts and Entertainment
A life-size sculpture by Nick Reynolds depicting singer Pete Doherty on a crucifix hangs in St Marylebone church
arts + ents
Arts and Entertainment
Escalating tension: Tang Wei and Chris Hemsworth in ‘Blackhat’
filmReview: Chris Hemsworth stars as a convicted hacker in Blackhat
Arts and Entertainment

Oscar voter speaks out

film
Arts and Entertainment
The Oscars race for Best Picture will be the battle between Boyhood and Birdman

Oscars
Arts and Entertainment
Anne Boleyn (Claire Foy), Thomas Cromwell (Mark Rylance)
tvReview: Wolf Hall
Arts and Entertainment
Tom Meighan of Kasabian collects the Best Album Award
music
Arts and Entertainment
Best supporting stylist: the late L’Wren Scott dressed Nicole Kidman in 1997
film
Arts and Entertainment
Dakota Johnson and Jamie Dornan as Anastasia Steele and Christian Grey in Fifty Shades of Grey

Film

Arts and Entertainment
Mick Carter (Danny Dyer) and Peggy Mitchell (Barbara Windsor)
tv occurred in the crucial final scene
Arts and Entertainment
Glasgow wanted to demolish its Red Road flats last year
architecture
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    HIV pill: Scientists hail discovery of 'game-changer' that cuts the risk of infection among gay men by 86%

    Scientists hail daily pill that protects against HIV infection

    Breakthrough in battle against global scourge – but will the NHS pay for it?
    How we must adjust our lifestyles to nature: Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch

    Time to play God

    Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch where we may need to redefine nature itself
    MacGyver returns, but with a difference: Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman

    MacGyver returns, but with a difference

    Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman
    Tunnel renaissance: Why cities are hiding roads down in the ground

    Tunnel renaissance

    Why cities are hiding roads underground
    'Backstreet Boys - Show 'Em What You're Made Of': An affectionate look at five middle-aged men

    Boys to men

    The Backstreet Boys might be middle-aged, married and have dodgy knees, but a heartfelt documentary reveals they’re not going gently into pop’s good night
    Crufts 2015: Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?

    Crufts 2015

    Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?
    10 best projectors

    How to make your home cinema more cinematic: 10 best projectors

    Want to recreate the big-screen experience in your sitting room? IndyBest sizes up gadgets to form your film-watching
    Manchester City 1 Barcelona 2 player ratings: Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man?

    Manchester City vs Barcelona player ratings

    Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man at the Etihad?
    Arsenal vs Monaco: Monaco - the making of Gunners' manager Arsene Wenger

    Monaco: the making of Wenger

    Jack Pitt-Brooke speaks to former players and learns the Frenchman’s man-management has always been one of his best skills
    Cricket World Cup 2015: Chris Gayle - the West Indies' enigma lives up to his reputation

    Chris Gayle: The West Indies' enigma

    Some said the game's eternal rebel was washed up. As ever, he proved he writes the scripts by producing a blistering World Cup innings
    In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare and murky loyalties prevails

    In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare

    This war in the shadows has been going on since the fall of Mr Yanukovych
    'Birdman' and 'Bullets Over Broadway': Homage or plagiarism?

    Homage or plagiarism?

    'Birdman' shares much DNA with Woody Allen's 'Bullets Over Broadway'
    Broadchurch ends as damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

    A damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

    Broadchurch, Series 2 finale, review
    A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower: inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

    Inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

    A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower