BVI News

Governor pushing for legislation to investigate persons with ‘unexplained wealth’

Governor Augustus Jaspert has said he will be “putting forward legislation” to help local agencies to effectively investigate individuals who possess “unexplained wealth” locally.

Governor Jaspert made the comments during a media briefing on Thursday, December 3.

He staid there are many residents in the territory who have raised concerns about the high number of drug, gun and cash seizures, which have recently taken place in the BVI.

“These make it very clear that the territory is vulnerable to drug trafficking, serious organised crime and all that comes with it. Criminal investigations are underway, so I will not comment on specific investigations, but we cannot ignore the fact that there is a problem here.”

“Drugs and smugglers are able to enter the territory’s closed borders and our people are getting killed. The risks for the territory are significant and we must not let this crime continue to infiltrate our society, our businesses and our way of life and we must not let the profits of crime risk corrupting our institutions,” he added.

Governor Jaspert said he hopes that the Cabinet and the House of Assembly support the legislation.

Proposed legislation within government’s plans

In a subsequent statement to the governor’s, Premier Andrew Fahie said in response that his government’s legislative agenda contains plans to enact such laws to bolster accountability in the territory.

He said: “With respect to legislation for accountability and good governance, your government has expressed our commitment to strengthening these laws in the Speech from the Throne which was delivered by none other than Governor Jaspert on 5 November 2020.”

“Your government’s legislative agenda for the upcoming year includes bringing forward the Integrity in Public Life Bill, Witness Anonymity legislation, the amending the Criminal Conduct Act to make provisions for unexplained wealth which derives from corruption and criminal activity, and several pieces of legislation to strengthen our justice system,” the Premier added.

Just last month, members of the Royal Virgin Islands Police Force seized more than 2,300 kilos of cocaine — the largest such seizure ever in the territory. Two police officers were arrested and charged in connection to the seizure.

The drugs had an estimated value of $250 million. 

Copyright 2021 BVI News, Media Expressions Limited. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or distributed.

93 Comments

Disclaimer: BVI News and its affiliated companies are not responsible for the content of comments posted or for anything arising out of use of the comments below or other interaction among the users.

  1. Strupes says:

    He needs to go already

    Like 20
    Dislike 97
  2. Tola says:

    An the police them done on the road with bail

    Like 12
    Dislike 1
  3. Intriguing... says:

    ‘Governor Augustus Jaspert has said he will be “putting forward legislation” to help local agencies to effectively investigate individuals who possess “unexplained wealth” locally.’

    I have two questions:

    1. What are the gaps in our government institutions that have been identified and render this legislation necessary?

    2. Does the Governor intend for this legislation to be put forward before his imminent departure, and if so, how long has it been in development and will the short timeframe allow any gaps to be adequately addressed?

    Like 9
    Dislike 5
  4. Moneymaker says:

    Asset Seizure and Forfeiture Act, 2020 need to be amended. many of the US authorities lead the world in seizing illegal assets. This happens because whistleblowers get strict protection and also share (10-30%) in any assets eventually seized after due process. This helps people leap the fence of not getting involved for fear of recriminations to it actually potentially being worth their while to say something. On the other hand those seizures in the US as well as the UK’s unexplained wealth orders can be fairly easily defeated for those against whom there is no real case. As Ling as the courts dealing with such cases here are as strong as our commercial court, this would again put us at the front of the pack globally and make those in the EU and beyond who make unsubstantiated snipes at BVI look even more silly.

    Like 14
    Dislike 2
    • Assets says:

      Problem in US with asset seizures is that these occur at the time of arrest. If the suspect is later found not guilty as charged, it is almost impossible, if not expensive in legal fees, to get those assets back.

      Like 3
      Dislike 1
  5. Reply says:

    “unexplained wealth”

    The magic word. It’s about time unexplained wealth be looked into. The streets have been whispering for a while.

    IMO, some of our politicians and people in government financial dealings needs looking into.

    How can one explain some of these people getting into politics/government without two pennies to rub together and coming out with big houses, and high end cars, and fancy suits on a politician/government salary? Hmmm.

    The governor is clearly onto something; it appears he smells dead rats.

    We shall see which legislators will come out against such proposed legislation. That will be telling. If they have nothing to hide, all their hands should go up in favor of such legislation and say Ei.

    Like 83
    Dislike 3
    • Happy to say says:

      Thats so true .all we should hear is,”the I’s have it.”nothing else.

      Like 9
      Dislike 1
    • Yup says:

      Just look at the Obamas. Came into the White House with nothing. Left with $300mil and growing. You [people] in government could learn quite a bit from these people. How to steal and don’t get caught. I know, write a book that becomes a best seller that nobody ever bought. Then do it again.

      Like 2
      Dislike 7
      • What says:

        an envious and irrelevant comment!

        Like 8
        Dislike 3
      • @YUP says:

        Waw ….you got to be blanca!

        Like 5
        Dislike 2
      • Susanne says:

        The Obamas didn’t steal anything.The president has a paycheck of 400k per year plus a lot of other perks. On the low side and considering all expenses are paid for while in White House (8 years) they left with a cool 3 plus million in their savings account. Speaking engagements, huge advances for books they both wrote (which became best sellers and pay royalties added to their bankroll). Prior to coming to White House their combined salaries were about 400k yearly. They both worked hard, their taxes were open to the public and their transparency was part of what made so many respect and appreciate their overall candor.

    • Vermin says:

      The rats are live, not dead. And they are feeding off us every day.

  6. 38 Spesh says:

    WHO ARE THESE CONCERNED CITIZENS? THE ONES WHO WANT TO BE THE ONLY RICH CITIZENS BECAUSE EVERYBODY ELSE MUST BE POOR FOR THOSE FEW TO FEEL GOOD? FOH WHAT THESE STREETS NEED TO DO IS GIVE THOSE NOSEY CONCERNED BOUT OTHER PEOPLE MONEY SOMETHING TO THINK ABOUT. PLOMO!

    Like 9
    Dislike 33
    • BuzzBvi says:

      caps lock. Is on the far left. You just click it and you can type normally.

      Like 16
      Dislike 1
      • Yugotabefukinkiddime says:

        1. You forgot to capitalize “Caps”.
        2. There should not be a period after “lock”.
        3. There should not be a capital “I” is “is”.
        4. You don’t click a caps lock button. You press it.
        Otherwise it’s all good.
        You’re welcome.

  7. Chosen says:

    Sir you are putting the rats to investigate where the cheese is coming from good luck with that.

    Like 40
    Dislike 1
  8. Clearly says:

    This Governor just looking attention.

    Like 6
    Dislike 54
  9. Keeping it real says:

    So why should we trust a Governor more than a politician or public officer? The Governor should be held by law to the same standards and not this double standard the Governor is trying to force on us.

    Like 9
    Dislike 36
    • access says:

      The governor doesn’t have access to how the funds are distributed as the premier.

      You’re not surprised the friends of the premier seems to get richer every time we elect a new person to be premier.

      Being friends with a governor doesn’t pay off as he cannot be voted out.

      Like 35
      Dislike 1
    • Duh! says:

      The Governor doesn’t have anything to hide.

      Like 36
      Dislike 1
  10. Absolute says:

    rubbish with prejudice.

    Will the non Black folk be investigated also? Highly unlikely.

    Some people are historically adversarial to Black people, and most importantly, Black people with money upsets them to their core.

    Like 20
    Dislike 37
    • @ Absolute says:

      In case you don’t know any Trust Company that is found to not enforce anti-money laundering regulations will be fined and there is a list of penalties over the years on FSC’s website.

      Get from here with your racist comment.

      Like 4
      Dislike 1
  11. Yawn says:

    Total nonsense because the brown people seemingly have too much! Are they going to investigate the pink people that come in here with big yachts and a nice rosy story?

    Like 17
    Dislike 30
  12. 55 says:

    YES AND I SING♡ IT’S ABOUT TIME.☆¥€J

    Like 12
    Dislike 3
  13. lol says:

    Funny how this is personalized when it obviously it has to be the UK cleaning up the stink.

    Like 12
    Dislike 2
  14. Really! says:

    Smells racist to me. But the gullible black people will side him.

    Like 11
    Dislike 25
  15. Mandingo says:

    FACTS: The UK citizens after visiting the BVI is floored at the amount of wealth the local people have. They left our islands as bird sanctuaries in the past; now they return and see the natural beauty and wealth we have so they would do anything to get it back.

    What they fail to understand is that we have inherited this land from our forefathers so we didn’t have to spend money for it. Secondly in the past and even now we all pitch in and helped each other build homes …now to have the bullies come back trying to take it away…. but time will tell… time longer than twine.

    Like 24
    Dislike 22
    • 38 Spesh says:

      We got something for those soulless edomites. Just wait and see come take what from who? You all think that will go down with out souls going to heaven or whatever fantasy land you all believe in?

      Like 4
      Dislike 4
    • Jane says:

      Tree of Hands is collecting 2000 presents for children in need this year. We only have a population of 30,000. Maybe the problem with this corruption is that all that money that money that should be going to looking after those less fortunate is being stolen by those who are supposed to be serving that population?

      But nah you are totally right IT IS all about some racist jealousy revenge.

      Like 4
      Dislike 1
  16. BVI News bias says:

    Its a shame bvi news did not publish the premier whole statement. Yall bias

    Like 5
    Dislike 7
  17. Eagle eye says:

    First the governor should investigate where the royal family get their wealth from.also take a look into the slave trade.then his conclusion should be to hold his white family accountable and encourage them to pay the reparations.

    Like 27
    Dislike 21
    • ... says:

      Too real. They profited on slaves, sold opium to the Chinese who didnt want it then fought a war over it, colonized 40+ places think of the brutalization. And now want to address ‘unexplained wealth’

      Like 6
      Dislike 7
  18. Mr.Gage says:

    Good going Governor, the only individuals tthat have an issue with this are the ones that have something to hide!

    Like 40
    Dislike 7
  19. Correct says:

    Very interesting, there’s indeed a lot of money laundering in the BVI. We can tell those who came from nothing and are as such very greedy and they walk around boosting with their gucci this and lv that thinking that they can fool people. All of a sudden they are opening 5,6 businesses and never holding a job for more 2 yrs of their own. Who they fooling? It doesn’t work like that people your greed and need to feel like you are better than people will cost you your life.

    Like 27
    Dislike 4
  20. @mr.gage says:

    Correct, first stop Virgin Gorda. Look into the businesses that open in 2017 and made sudden rapid growth.

    Like 13
    Dislike 4
  21. Ausar says:

    Excellent suggestions there, Governor!!!!

    Leave no stones unturned!

    Investigate from the TOP TO BOTTOM; to include legislative representatives, physicians, and barristers, all the way down to the custodial workers, in this country!

    Good Luck!

    Like 21
    Dislike 5
  22. Wondered says:

    Often wondered how people with no explained income had their big cars, go fast boats, and 2 or 3 “side chics”. No taxes paid. It’s about time the government start wondering also.

    Like 26
    Dislike 4
  23. Yay Governor says:

    Yes Governor. This is referred to in the industry as suspicious. If one works as a cleaner but tomorrow have 10 apartments renting, this needs to be reported and their source of wealth investigated. It is part of the compliance regime in the financial services industry here. No reason why it should not also apply on a domestic level.

    Like 22
    Dislike 4
    • FEO Gomez says:

      I can see it all now smh lol. You home eating your dinner with your family feeling good you just took down some suspect because you felt he/she had to much wealth. I can hear the music all now lol the sound of CROCODILE TEETH tearing up your home and your family souls. You all going to get what you asking for cause Governor going to be in UK you all got to live here.

      Like 2
      Dislike 2
    • @yay Governor says:

      Facts

      Like 1
      Dislike 1
  24. Iz Me says:

    My income doesn’t come from the BVI. But I live here. So Do I come under unexplained wealth? lol
    Sounds like you are up to something and trying to use your legendary divide and conquer tactics. What the legislation in the UK that’s being used a template for this?

    Like 5
    Dislike 9
    • Jane says:

      An unexplained wealth order (UWO) is a type of court order issued by a British court to compel the target to reveal the sources of their unexplained wealth. UWOs were introduced by sections 1–2 of the Criminal Finances Act 2017 and are governed by sections 362A–362T of Part 8 of the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002.

      Most commonly, they seem to be being used against Russian oligarchs residing in the UK. So “yes” if similar legislation was introduced in BVI your income was earned elsewhere but you have assets here, you could potentially need to explain how you legitimately accrued that wealth.

  25. Bree says:

    Much needed legislation but I hope there will be no biasness involve. If we are going to investigate where people wealth come from let us include everyone. Whether black, white, local, belongers, residence, whatever their status may be. As long as they are operating businesses in the territory they should be on the list. No picking and Choosing who to investigate. No hiding behind legislation and hiding hands while throwing darts at some and at the same time moving silently with others. Everyone should be treated the same. Also lets include on this list past governors, commissioners and other government contracted works who came in as pauper and left rich. After all we need to ensure every penny is honestly earned. On anther note, I getting my popcorn and drinks because I know some surprises and shocks will be coming.

    Like 16
    Dislike 2
  26. @ involve FCS in Legislation says:

    You’re forgetting the biggest one of all

    Car/jeep rentals

    We aren’t looking at the Old dogs that have been around for ages, we’re looking at the new comers lol yep!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Money laundering written all over them.

    Like 12
    Dislike 1
    • @ “@Involve FSC in Legislation” says:

      Ferry companies didn’t come out of nowhere either.

      The old dogs are not sleeping after making the money appear legitimate. Ongoing checks have to be conducted as is required by the Anti-Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing Code.

      They all need investigating.

      Like 7
      Dislike 2
  27. Bigger Picture says:

    I am concerned that the people of the BVI including you don’t see the big picture here.

    The governor is trying to paint the picture portraying the ENTIRE BVI as a territory without integrity.

    Mr. Fahie sees it for what it is but bloggers like yourself don’t seem to see that.

    The governor’s agenda is to attack the integrity of the BVI government and the systems they have in place. Thus allowing the UK to be able to come in and take control using the guise of the lack of integrity in the BVI.

    All Hon. Fahie is doing here is not allowing the governor to pull the wool over everybody’s eyes like he was able to do to you and other bloggers posting similar sentiments as yours!

    Continue to fight for the integrity of the BVI Mr. Fahe, people who could see the façade that the governor is trying push are with you brother Fahie.

    Like 8
    Dislike 21
    • Why? says:

      Why on earth would the UK (population 66 million, with a GNP of $ 2.8 trillion) be interested in a remote place that has maybe 35,000 people (the UK has about 300 towns that have more people) and GNP of about $500 million. Taking it over would add 0.05% to UK population, and would contribute an increase its GDP by 0.02%, probably about what it would cost to administer the Territory. On top of that, it appears there are issues of drug trafficking and money laundering that would cost a lot to investigate, prosecute, and punish. Neither is there a geopolitical reason for the UK to take over the BVIs.

      Like 21
      Dislike 2
  28. Y'all stupid says:

    Why people try and racialise this…..every country looks into its citizens and where there money comes from. Y’all BVI people don’t know nothing of the real world. You sit on a tiny piece of rock and think y’all know everything. Most of you would not even cope in the proper world……if you got money you should not be scared to say where you got it……if you scared well then you a dirty rotten thief. You all people are really dumb.

    Like 17
    Dislike 5
    • Me again says:

      You only want to know where it is to steal it and rush home.please wait your turn is coming since thats what you want.

      Like 2
      Dislike 4
  29. WONDERING says:

    Are they going to push for Legislation to explain how persons were deprived of ancestral lands by scum who are now highly honored with medals and titles by the British government or is that above the law. By the way how far back are we going to go. Will the colonists descendants have to explain what happened to the indigenous people of the Caribbean and Americas and how much was paid for their lands. Governor give it a break your authority comes from the barrel of a gun and the blood of the innocent. There is none righteous not one.

    Like 2
    Dislike 11
  30. V4 says:

    That is the best news I’ve heard all year, the thickest person on the island knows there is corruption when contracts are handed out to family and friends. You only have to look at some of the houses and vehicles to see there is a huge disparity from the regular individual. I bet the Premier is cacking himself and that’s why he’s making so much noise. And by the way as an OT of the U.K. the Governor is well with in his right to recommend the investigation. If you want independence and corruption get off the fence and vote for it, no one including the U.K. government are stopping you

    Like 13
    Dislike 2
  31. HonestTruth says:

    Investigate all the “inner circles” and the members of the “lodge” who seem to enrich themselves with ease.

    Like 5
    Dislike 1
  32. Enforcement? says:

    How is this going to work? Just like all the other stuff in the courts? This is going to be a giant circle jerk unless you change the system this is enforced in.
    The system is set up with the hands on the scale for the Belonger (1/3 of the population). It is your country – so I understand, you make the rules. But it doesn’t make for fair enforcement. Judges let the local guys off even when they are caught red handed (i.e. generator stolen on Virgin Gorda, repainted and hooked to local guys house: went to trial, innocent verdict…)
    I am resigned to just living with this. It isn’t fair, but it is the way it is. Otherwise this is a great place to live. Just keep your own nose clean and your head down!
    This whole place needs a good 12-step program. It would make you all much happier.

    Like 5
    Dislike 2
  33. Best governor says:

    This is good news
    But unfortunately them tolans will hate me governor more
    That’s why the want to get raid of him
    All the drugs money will be exposed

    Like 10
    Dislike 2
  34. Number 1 says:

    START WITH THIS GUY WITH THE HELICOPTER !
    Helicopter
    3 acre property
    Gym
    School
    Law office.
    Who he is? Where all that money come from ? Or only black money being investigated

    Like 1
    Dislike 1
    • Jane says:

      Why dont you ask him? He’ll tell you, he is a tax-exile from the UK: he has a substantial portfolio of properties in the North of England and is a property developer. Jealous much?

  35. Eye says:

    This was to happened long time….drugs important here more than education for them such a disgrace.

    Like 6
    Dislike 1
  36. Billy Bop says:

    Aslong as i aint doing nothing illegal,How i can afford to buy whatever is NOBODY BUSINESS BUT MINES!

    Like 1
    Dislike 1
  37. Norris Turnbull says:

    How the governor got in his position?

    Like 1
    Dislike 1
  38. To many commenters above says:

    Jealousy if the ugliest trait. The way you would like to see your own people fall because they found a path to success, is beyond embarrassing. The fact that people’s possible impending downfall gets you excited says enough about you as a person and why you haven’t been able to accomplish anything, which is why you sit around green with envy.

    There is no way I could sit here and cheer on this man and his antics to hit our people with one final blow before he wonders back off to the land where their wealth came from the punishment and pain of others. Mr. Governor, go to h**l.

    Like 2
    Dislike 6
  39. The Truth says:

    If some politicians had their way Stanford would have been all through the BVI. Epstein was right next door in the USVI. I hope investigations start at the top with the elite first.

Leave a Comment

Shares