By Rawlston Pompey
Few in living memory would deny that they have been ‘Induced; yielded to ‘Temptation,’ only to find themselves ‘Entrapped,’ and before they could utter the scriptural verse ‘Jesus Wept,’ they were sliding dangerously down a slippery path to ‘Destruction.’ Likened to many other jurisdictions, the leader in fighting ‘Transnational Crimes,’ has no doubt, been the ‘United States of America.’ Its agencies have shown little tolerance for major acts of criminality. Thus, in responding to the challenges of ‘Organized Crimes,’ these agencies have been as unrelenting in curtailment, as they have been in pursuits of criminal organizations, including those predisposed to acquire wealth, substantial enough to enabling them to live luxuriously off the ‘Proceeds of Crime.’
20 YEARS – US$20, 000 – 21 DAYS
Yielding to temptation by an inducement of some ‘US$700, 000,’ this has brought more discomfort to an individual, holding the privileged position of Premier. He has made the gravest, ultimate and most ‘Fatal Mistake.’ For that which he had ‘built in 20 years,’ now seems poised to collapse. Research has shown that on ‘April 7, 2022,’ he was reassured with a gratuitous payment of ‘US$20, 000.’ In ‘21 days,’ these have collapsed. This sum neither represents his premiership and tenure’ and/or longevity in ‘Elective Governance,’ nor his human dignity and worth. Given these developments, reasonable inferences might be drawn, of certain operational factors of; (a) ‘…Agency collaboration; (b) …Confidentiality, premised on the principle ‘Only Who Needs to Know:’ and (c) …Functional cooperation.’
FATALIST – FATALISM
Though he may not have been a ‘Fatalist,’ internalizing what he was being lured into, he may have harbored eerie feelings that speak to ‘Fatalism.’ Undoubtedly, he had foreseen serious consequences for being complicit in an illegal operation, with clear arrest and inescapable prosecutorial consequences. Thus, that which he had reportedly expressed fears over, seemed to have occasioned. This may be easily discerned lies in this statement; ‘…It took me 20 years to get here; …I don’t want to leave in 20 minutes’ [Loop News: April 29, 2022]. He appeared full conscious of the serious nature of the activities. In these operations, whatever the objectives to be achieved, and whomever are targeted, success not only depends upon careful planning, but also dictates substantial inducement. Thus, it shall not only induce an unwavering state of mind, but shall also be enticing, readily acceptable, and gripping and irresistible.
This commentary looks at methodologies, strategies and/or operational tactics, law enforcement agencies have employed in; (a) ‘…Inducing; (b) …Luring; and (c) …Apprehending suspects and/or known criminals.’ Not infrequently, these were in relating to their involvement in acts relating bribery, corruption and financial crimes, including fraud. In some major criminal activities, it has neither been by accident, nor mistake when criminal suspects are unsuspectingly lured away from their haven.’
For human existence, survival and socialization, sufficiency of money has always been a desire of every human being. It has not only brought adversities, reputational embarrassment to many people. It has been the experience that greed for money has seen many ended up, either in the cemetery or the penitentiary. Even with ‘Foreseeable Consequences,’ in satisfaction of their desires, many have taken calculated risks. In spite of this, accessing, acquiring and possessing money has still been man’s greatest desires. Still, it has been the cause of most of his miseries. This not only characterizes human nature, but also that which have befell them, when driven by an uncontrollable appetite of greed.
GREED AND ENTRAPMENT
Consciously and purposefully, they have allowed themselves to be lured or influenced to do the unthinkable. The cases that make these points, may have been that of: (i) …Italian/Antiguan and Barbudan businessman Dante Tagliaventi 55: (ii) …Jamaican reggae artist Mark Anthony Mirie ‘Buju Banton 48; and more recently (iii) …British Virgin Islands Premier Andrew Fahie 51, and two fellow-British Virgin-Islanders, an alleged conspiratorial combination of mother ‘Oleanvine Maynard 60, and son Kadeem Stephan Maynard.’ They have all succumbed to apparent ‘Monetary Greed and Entrapment.’
STRAIGHT AND CROOKED
From professional counter-narcotics training, those conducting ‘Sting Operations,’ know that the corrupt, vulnerable, and among the most easily induced, are public officials with an insatiable appetite driven by greed. This development may have confirmed the long-harbored feelings and frequently expressed view that some elected officials that went in ‘Straight as an Arrow,’ some always seem to turn out as ‘Crooked as a Corkscrew.’ Globally, many have given the citizenry reasons to believe that the tenets of good governance were being observed in breach than practice. In their quest for self-enrichment or to acquire wealth, many were known to have positioned themselves to be exploited. Not infrequently, such acquisition has raised questions of source and legitimacy.
FINER THINGS IN LIFE
Legitimately or illegitimately, nothing is planned without an objective. Conversely, nothing is done without a purpose. In addition to those, are the acquisition of ‘Money, Mansion-like dwellings and Realty’ at earths four cardinal points. Additionally, there has been a burning desire to acquire a fleet of ‘…Top of the line automobiles from Mercedes Benz: …Rolls Royce to Lamborghini; …Lear jets and luxurious yachts; …Designer suits; …Expensive jewelry; …Travels to exotic places.’ These speak to the acquisition of some of the ‘Finer Things in Life.’ As a consequent, maintaining such lifestyles requires sources of income that often shows an arrow constantly pointing to some overseas penitentiary. Then one by one, persons have found themselves induced, unsuspectingly lured and inescapably trapped.
In some territorial jurisdictions, it is lawful for law enforcers to entrap those disposed to acts of criminality. The suspected criminally-minded invariably comes under the scrutiny of law enforcement. As far as ‘Organized Crimes’ are concerned, many jurisdictions in the ‘United States’ have gained notoriety for entrapping persons holding prominent positions. In some, ‘Bait Cars’ are placed in indigent communities. Thus, State agencies often create environment, enabling or conducive’ for the commission of crime. Thus, the pre-disposed or unsuspecting individuals have either acted against the best interest of society, or to the detriment of personal liberty. Consequently, many individuals, socially-displaced, have often seen as gravitating to committing crime.
GREEDY AND CORRUPT
Many within these agencies have been trained to behave and act as miscreants. Research has shown that some agents have acted as; ‘…Prostitutes; …Businessmen and Racketeers.’ Some have acted as ‘Agents Provocateur.’ They were often placed in making ‘controlled deliveries of illicit narcotics or money to the targeted. Still, others have played roles of ‘…Gun runners; …Drug traffickers, while others impersonate and present themselves as ‘Cartels working in tandem with those in ‘Central and South America.’ Not only have the ‘Corrupt’ have fallen victims to ‘Greed,’ but also to these exploits when employed in ‘Sting Operations.’ Thus, it was never by mistake that the greedy ones were inescapably trapped.
Continuously leading the ‘Cross-Border Charge’ against ‘Organized Crimes,’ has been the premier ‘United States’ law enforcement agencies; (i) ‘Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI): and (ii) Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA).’ Their resolve may have been seen from previously conducted operations. There has not only been cohesiveness among these agencies, but also a coordinated approach to the task at hand. These may have been evident in a most ‘Noteworthy Sting’ mounted against; (i) ‘…Jamaica reggae artist ‘Mark Anthony Mirie 44,’ stage-name ‘Buju Banton.’ Hit boggled the mind that of all persons, he was engaged in conversation with a ‘DEA informant’ from ‘Spain to Miami’ following a ‘European Tour’ [December 10, 2009].
That which may also have ‘Stirred Interest’ across the region was yet another carefully planned and executed ‘Sting Operation.’ This took place in ‘Trinidad and Tobago,’ where indicted ‘Antiguan and Barbudan fraudster ‘Henderson Joseph,’ then on the run from US justice was nabbed. Most embarrassingly, and seemingly without considering the benefit of ‘Due Diligence,’ he landed a ‘Deputy Chief of Security’ at the then unmodernized ‘VC Bird International Airport.’ This may have been all that the ‘United States Federal Authorities’ needed to know. In a carefully-planned ‘Regional Airport Security Chiefs Symposium,’ the collaborated ‘Sting’ was on. It was reportedly sponsored and fully funded by ‘Federal Authorities.’
STRATEGY OF ENTRAPMENT
The ‘Strategy of Entrapment’ was concealed from regional attendees. Disguisedly, it was held under the auspices of the ‘Government of Trinidad and Tobago’ . Clearly, to apprehend the ‘Fugitive from Justice,’ they purposefully invited ‘Airport Security Chiefs and Deputies.’ Unsuspecting of one of the objectives, ‘Deputy Chief’ was unsuspectingly lured and nabbed at his hotel room . Avoiding a possible lengthy custodial stay pending ‘Extradition Proceedings,’ he reportedly waived his right to such proceedings, and was flown directly back to the ‘United States’ to answer the fraud indictments. He subsequently transitioned this life.
Research has revealed other ‘Noteworthy Stings.’ These came with sophisticated operational planning, aided by the effective use of technology. In almost surgeon-like surgical execution, ‘DEA’ agents have apprehended; (iii) …Italian/Antiguan and Barbudan businessman ‘Dante Tagliaventi 55,’ unsuspectingly lured from ‘Antigua and Barbuda to Santo Domingo’ on a business deal [May 2012]. The most notable ‘Sting (iv) may have been that clinically-executed by ‘Federal Authorities’ against several top officials of the ‘International Football Federation (FIFA).’ At the crack of dawn, law enforcers swooped down on the ‘Zurich Baur-au-Lac Hotel.’ This operation netted some ‘6-top ‘FIFA officials.’ All were indicted on ‘Bribery; …Corruption; …Wire fraud; and Conspiracy charges’ [Switzerland: NY Times: December 3, 2015].
THE BIG CATCH
Respecting drug-related activities, the classified acts have always been those associated with: (i) ‘…Drug Trafficking: (ii) …Money Laundering: and (iii) …Conspiracy’ to commit these offences. Some agencies are never too quick in letting the ‘Entrapment Door’ fly-shut, without ‘Big Catches.’ This necessarily means, ‘Big Hooks and Baits’ were needed for the ‘Big Catch.’ Not infrequently, with stealth-like cat moves and use of ‘Money Baits,’ those considered to be greedy were to be ‘Targeted; Induced and Entrapped.’ These appeared to have been among the most used ploys. The greedy often lost their cognitive skills of that which is right or wrong. Hence, there is no discernment of dangling criminal consequences.
These pre-dominate those classified as ‘Transnational Crimes.’ Thus, the frequency of cross-border transactions, these as ‘Extraditable offences.’ Despite this process, some jurisdictional law enforcement agencies, have devised ways in circumventing the ‘Judicial Processes.’ Some may have learned from the experiences of former ‘Financial Service Regulatory Commission (FSRC),’ ‘Leroy King.’ It appeared that some public officials were running riot with corruption in the ‘British Virgin Islands (BVI).’ The ‘Undercover ‘DEA’ Agent’ appeared to have been guided to that ‘British Territory.’ Both are residents of the several islands that comprised the ‘British protectorate Virgin Islands (BVI).’ The ‘Premier and Ports Director’ were ‘Fair Catches,’ without the need for ‘Extradition.’
The islands were said to boast a vibrant economy, driven by ‘Cruise Tourism’ and thriving ‘Yacht Industry.’ Even so, research has shown that anti-corruption and mal-administration sentiments were publicly expressed against the ‘Andrew Fahie’ 8-member administration. This was said to have provoked discontent and distrust among its population, thereby prompting a ‘Commission of Inquiry.’ A trio, including ‘Premier Andrew Fahie 51; Oleanvine Maynard 60,’ along with her adult-son ‘Kadeem Maynard’ have been the subject of two ‘Sting Operations.’ Seemingly, they may have unwittingly engaged in discussions that have subjected their liberties to deprivation.
FLIRTING WITH DANGER
Having been caused to befriend an undercover ‘DEA Agent,’ posing as a ‘Colombian Drug Trafficker,’ British Virgin Islands (BVI) ‘Premier Andrew Alturo Fahie 51,’ had not the slightest inkling that he was ‘Flirting with Danger.’ Neither was he aware that he was being targeted for destruction by a ‘Ravening Wolf.’ Clearly, he may have ignored the ‘Scripture’ that speaks to ‘Ravening Wolves’ [Matthew 7: 15]. Apparently persuasively led to the ‘Miami Opa Locka Airport,’ unsuspecting of ‘Entrapment,’ he embarked onto a private executive jet. Such, undoubtedly, will have been technologically-ready to capture that which may have been ‘self-incriminating evidence.’
The 35, 000 population, is predominantly black. The populace reportedly became deeply concerned and despondent. Their concerns have brought them to the point of being anguished over the unseemly behavior of some public officials. The people’s concerns appeared not to have been frivolous or baseless, as they have prompted inquiries into the conduct of the ‘Andrew Fahie-led Government.’ The ‘Report’ submitted to Governor Rankin by retired ‘British Judge, Sir Gary Hickinbottom,’ was said to have contained ‘Recommendations,’ that if implemented, shall have telling effect as to how the ‘British Protectorate’ shall be ‘Governed and Ruled.’ Instructively, among the recommendations are: (i) ‘…Suspension of the Constitution: (ii) …Dissolution of Parliament: and (iii) …Cessation of Ministerial Government’ [ANR: April 29, 2022]. The residents have already made their feelings known.
It may have been no coincidence that the undercover preliminaries, said to have been unsuspectingly conducted over some seven months on the ‘British and US Virgin Islands’ had become ‘Operationally-Ready’ [October 2021-April 2022]. Given the hosting of the ‘Seatrade Cruise Convention’ and their attendance, there may have been no better place to conduct a ‘Sting Operation,’ than in ‘Miami.’ Consequent upon the ‘SeaTrade Convention’ at the ‘Miami Convention Center’ [April 25–28, 2022], reasonable inferences might be drawn that it has been so perfectly timed. While the ‘Recommendations’ may have been under official consideration, ‘Premier Andrew Alturo Fahie 51,’ was reported to have been under DEA apprehension’ [NBC NEWS: April 28, 2022].
That which appeared to have overwhelmed the ‘Premier’s desires, may have been that which was reportedly stashed aboard a private jet. Court documents revealed several colorful shopping bags filled with ‘Counterfeited United States Currency,’ totaling ‘$700, 000.’ He had seen that which he may have been assured. Monetarily, this sum was valueless, as they have no ‘Legal Tender.’ The deceitful undercover ‘DEA’ agent reportedly ensured that he held their interest. This sum was reportedly not immediate disbursement as it was intended to satisfy the Cartel’s demand for shipments delivered. Media reports revealed that for an estimated sale of ‘30, 000 Kilos at US$26, 000,’ ‘Commission of US$7.8M’ was the eventual receivable.
GESTURE OF FAITH – SEALED FATE
The Premier, at a point was said to have been apprehensive, but appeared not to have appreciated his responsibility to the nation, as well as its international obligations. Seeking to eliminate suspicion and ensuring unwavering participation in the illegal activities, the undercover agent reportedly gifted the ‘Ports Director’ with ‘US$10, 000.’ He reportedly described it as a ‘Gesture of Faith.’ Following a tri-partite meeting, he reportedly gifted the ‘Premier’ with ‘US$20, 000.’ He also described it as ‘Faith.’ Little did they know that such gifts were nothing, but ‘Monetary Baits.’ That was needed to effectively ‘Sealed’ their ‘Fate.’ When the end came, painfully he reportedly asked; ‘Why am I being arrested? …I have no money and I have no drugs’ [NBC: April 28, 2022]. There was no place to run. Both a were caught like two ‘Rats in a Trap.’
Those with a working understanding of ‘Public Corruption,’ knows some public officials have given general public reasons to be wary of their ‘Public Life Behavior.’ Though temptational, some were known to have been driven by ‘Avoidable Greed.’ Seemingly, across the region, much was not known of ‘British Virgin Islands (BVI),’ ‘Premier Andrew Alturo Fahie.’ However, when news disseminated through the electronic media and reverberated in the and throughout the region, that he was arrested in ‘Miami,’ eyes reddened and filled with tears, instantly fell. Seemingly, he had fallen victim to ‘Irresistible Inducement.’
PREMIERSHIP AND ADMINISTRATION
Adding to his miseries, this apparently came at a time when public sentiments seemed to have intensified and citizen’s confidence in his administration appeared to have been waning. Then for all intents and purposes, his ‘Premiership and Administration,’ have been dealt two nerve-shattering blows. The first such blow, being his arrest in ‘Miami’ at an airport identified as ‘Opa Locka’ [BBC: April 28, 2022]. Secondly, and equally devastating, was the apparent coincidental release of that may have been, rightly or wrongly, described as damning. The contents of the ‘British-Commissioned Inquiry Report,’ appeared as troubling to his reputation and premiership, as it has been to his administration [BVI News: April 28, 2022].
PREMIER – PORT DIRECTOR – SCHEMER
Moreover, the arrest has not only complicated matters, but may also have serious implications for continued tenure as Premier, his character and ‘Integrity in Public Life.’ As damning as the ‘Commission of Inquiry Report’ may have been, it was purely a matter to be considered ‘Internal Affairs.’ While regional people may not have been overwhelmed with the contents, many have been left utterly dismayed over his arrest, that of the islands’ ‘Ports Managing Director, Oleanvine Maynard 60;’ and her alleged ‘Mastermind’ adult son, Kadeem Stephan Maynard.’ They may have made themselves ‘Co-conspirators’ to each other, in a scheme that saw their worlds suddenly collapsed. A respected ‘Premier; …an influential ‘Port Director’ and an apparent ‘Schemer’ and persuasive son, fell [April 28, 2022].
Instructively, when ‘Oleanvine Maynard’ was appointed ‘Managing Director of the Porth Authority,’ the ‘Board’s Chairman, Kelvin Hodge’ was quoted as saying; ‘…Mrs. Maynard is a dedicated and committed professional who brings a wealth of business management and organizational experience to the Port Authority: …We are confident that she will be up to the challenge of posting the ports for the future’ [Press Release: Government of the Virgin Islands: June 4, 2021]. When news broke of the arrest of ‘Premier Andrew Fahie’ and ‘Director of the BVI Ports Oleanvine Maynard,’ it may have occurred to the Chairman and Port Authority Board’ just what type of management she had brought to the Port Authority and the nation as a whole.
POSITIONS OF POWER
Geographically, the ‘Caribbean Islands’ have long been seen by neighboring jurisdictions as being used with increasing frequency by ‘South American Drug Cartels.’ Some jurisdictions continue to harbor the view that some public officials have been using their ‘Positions of Power’ conspiratorially with persons unknown in the drug world. Some have been accused of providing safe haven for those declared; (a) …Fugitives from justice: and (b) …Money Launderers for substantial sums of their proceeds. Since it has been determined that these islands provide a conduit for illicit narcotics to be trafficked into ‘United States,’ all have been placed under close satellite and maritime scrutiny.
Consequently, member-States of the ‘Caribbean Community (CARICOM),’ had either been persuasively or coercively entered into signing the uni-laterally devised, but highly contentious ‘Shiprider Agreement’ . The agreement allows for ‘US Coastguard Vessels’ to carry out unscheduled ‘Marine Patrols’ within their territorial borders. It provides for unfettered and unimpeded access to their waters. Lacking resources to effectively address the issue of ‘Drug Trafficking,’ such have made them ideally suited to all kinds of ‘Trafficking.’ Given recent developments a ‘BVI Premier’ may have been considered reckless not to know or to have taken reasonable steps inform himself of this well documented ‘Maritime Agreement.’
The US has not only sought to protect its national borders, but also, its security and economic interests. The ‘Agreement’ not only provided authority, but also the basis for; (a) ‘…Stopping; (b) …Searching; and (c) …Seizing reasonably suspected trafficking in ‘humans, guns and narcotics.’ Showing resistance to coercion on the basis of sovereignty ‘Barbados and Jamaica’ exhibited streaks of stubbornness. Such came with consequences. Targeting its economic lifeline– ‘Tourism,’ the lone ‘Sir Grantley Adams International Airport’ was ‘Downgraded.’ It became unsafe for ‘American Carriers’ .
Ensuring that ‘Jamaica,’ boasting a much stronger economic base, ‘Military Assistance’ was cut off. Subsequently, under the guise of strengthening security ties, six (6) ‘Organization of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS),’ appeared to have been coerced into signing ‘Bi-lateral Extradition Treaties’ with the ‘United States.’ They have all ratified the respective Treaties through their respective Parliaments. Consequent upon which, these impoverished have imposed upon themselves, an international obligation to cause the Judiciary to visit upon both nationals and non-nationals, when request, though infrequently, are made for ‘Extradition.’
SPIRIT OF DISCERNMENT
As has been known, some parts of the region and some international travels, are as dangerous for some people, as it has been for carefully laid traps for rodents. There are often hidden dangers. Some can feel and smell lurking danger, as much as they can see it.’ Two prominent regional individuals, ‘Austin ‘Jack’ Warner,’ former ‘FIFA/CONCACAF’ President and St. Kitts/Nevis ‘Prime Minister Dr. Timothy Harris,’ may have been endowed with the ‘Spirit of Discernment.’ The former, with keenness of perception of ‘Entrapment’ and fear of arrest, placed restrictions on their freedom of movement.’ If no other, these Leaders knew that they shall not ‘Tread where angels fear.’
JESTING DENZIL DOUGLAS
Whatever may have prompted their individual decisions not to travel to the ‘Zurich FIFA Meeting’ [Switzerland: December 2015], and a ‘Cannes Tourism Symposium’ [France: October 23, 2017], both averted possible deprivation of liberties and restriction on their freedom of movement. Even with perfectly legitimate official or personal reasons for the deferred or aborted travel, this had prompted his predecessor ‘Dr. Denzil Douglas’ into jestingly ask, ‘…Was it that he was afraid of being met at Gatwick?’ Seeking to quell speculation and allay fears, in response, ‘Dr. Timothy Harris’ ‘Press Secretary’ denied any apprehension of fear of travelling to that airport– ‘Zurich’ [CNN: October 27, 2017].
The desire, quest and pursuit of wealth by those that have risen to position of prominence or accorded privileged positions, shall know that they have not only been so positioned for self-enrichment, while the populace scrounge. They shall also know that which may not have happened in ‘20 years, may happen in 20 minutes’ [BVI Premier Andrew Alturo Fahie].’ He may have guided himself from knowledge of previous attempts to oust him from office. This may have been known when British authorities reportedly caused a ‘Scotland Yard Detective’ to be ‘Seconded’ to the ‘Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).’ Research has revealed that collaboratively, British and Federal authorities sought unsuccessfully to nab him for ‘Money Laundering’ [NBC: 2003]. The ‘Strategy of Entrapment,’ seemed to have been more effective. In the case at issue, he may have ignored his feelings as he sought to ascertain the status of the unknown contact. Given the development and his position as a sitting ‘Head of State,’ experts familiar with ‘Diplomatic Conventions,’ have raised the issue of ‘Functional Immunity.’ Consequent upon his arrest, media reports have revealed that he has retained an attorney to address the issue of his arrest on foreign soil. ***
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