BVI News

Duo found with $805K in BVI waters found guilty! $$ forfeited to Crown

The two men found in BVI waters with $805,370 cash in June 2020 were yesterday found guilty on all charges and ordered by the court to forfeit the monies seized during the operation.

The two offenders — Kemel Wilson, a US Virgin Islands resident and Alberto Valera, a Dominican Republic national who resided in the BVI at the time of his arrest — were convicted of possessions of proceeds of criminal conduct, failing to declare monies to Her Majesty’s Customs and illegal entry. Wilson was also found guilty of failing to comply with an order. 

“These monies were recovered on the 16th day of June 2020 when officers from the Royal Virgin Islands Police Force and the Customs Department spotted the defendants while on sea patrol just off the coast of St Thomas,” the A Office of the Director of Public Prosecution said in a recent statement.

Sentencing for the matter is scheduled for May 2022. 

Wilson was represented by Reynella Rawlins and Valero was represented by Stephen Daniels. The case was prosecuted by Crown Counsel Kael London. 


The court heard that on June 16, 2020, members of the Joint Task Force were in the vicinity of the Tobago islands. While there, they observed a blue and white go-fast vessel with two outboard engines coming from the waters of St John, USVI and heading towards Great Thatch Island. 

While observing the vessel, authorities said they noticed it was heading to Jost Van Dyke. However, when the occupants realised they were being pursued, they headed to Smuggler’s Cove on Tortola. 

The court heard that the authorities — which comprised of officers from Customs, Immigration and the police force — gave chase with the use of the siren for about seven minutes. 

When the officers realised that the vessel was not slowing down despite being ordered to stop, they had to make manoeuvres to force the boat to come to a halt. 

During the search of the vessel, there were two black bags at the back of the vessel, and when the Joint Task Force questioned the men on the contents, they remained silent. 

A search of the bags was conducted and several transparent vacuum-sealed bags with “large sums of cash” was discovered. 



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  1. good to great says:

    more money for the fahie administration to waste

    Like 21
    Dislike 1
  2. Who sails/walk around with $805,370 cash? says:

    I could think of one reason and one reason alone. Drug money proceeds. Lock them up!

    Imagine all the destruction that money has wrought on the lives of others. Just an hour ago, I met someone who had a major stroke from using cocaine. Now they are disabled, can’t walk nor talk properly with no one to take care of them. A tragedy of their own making.

    Using or selling drugs has real-life consequences. Simply don’t use if you have not already, and if you have a problem with any illicit drug or alcohol, seek help before it’s too late.

    These pushers of human destruction for fast money need some good time at Balsum Ghut to cool their heels. There is a steep price for fast money.

    Stay in school people. Dealing drugs is a dead-end road. It’s either 6 feet under or a 6 ft jail cell. The choice is yours, and what’s your fate will be revealed in short course.

    The streets say many in these islands are trafficking in illegal drugs. Well, this case among many before gives credence to the streets.

    Like 14
  3. something strange says:

    Why is it that a gangster cant have/spend his dirty money and the government could spend it? Why don’t they burn the money along with the drugs since its dirty money?

    Like 16
    Dislike 2
    • Good Question says:

      Why don’t they burn the money along with the drugs since its dirty money?
      Well that’s sounds logical doesn’t it? You would think so. They routinely tell us they destroy confiscated contraband, so why not the money?

      Let not fool ourselves here. The government makes the rules and the laws. It says drugs are illegal and the trafficking of such drugs comes with penalties if caught.

      One of those penalties is the confiscation of the proceeds of illicit drug transactions. As per the law, such monies/boats/houses or whatever are forfeited to the state upon conviction.

      The government is not trying nor will they destroy valuable money. Not going to happen. Hopefully, they will use that money to support law enforcement with the same enforcement effort that led up to the seizure of that money in the first place.

  4. @ GOOD TO GREAT ? says:


  5. So says:

    Ppl just love talk without knowing the matter

    Like 3
    Dislike 1
  6. Mankind says:

    Drug money pulled the bvi out of shit plenty time.The hurricanes..Covid the list goes on.There is nothing too stop it.The amount of coke use in UK is staggering.It’s literally part and parcel of a night out.Unlike the US which prefers pills.Wanna bump mate?cheers.The world wants their drugs.

  7. Anonymous says:

    Oh think deeply Tortolian. The Govt. Can utilise the cash in building a rehab.Centre for those who are affected by dangerous drugs. Why burn? That’s backward thinking

  8. Power and greed says:

    Its about time – why did it take nearly 2 years to convict them? It was an open and shut case wasn’t?

  9. Das Boat says:

    What happened to the boat? What happened to the perps?

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