BVI News

Premier could face life in prison if convicted of trafficking charges

Premier Andrew Fahie could face as much as life imprisonment if convicted of the drug and money laundering charges laid against him in Florida, USA last Thursday.

This is according to a Congressional Research Service (CRS) report on the maximum penalties that may be imposed when a person is convicted for violating the USA’s federal Controlled Substances Act (CSA) and other drug supply and drug demand related laws.

The report maps out the penalty structure for violations of 21 U.S.C. 960 (drug trafficking), among other offences.

Federal drug trafficking or distribution laws provide stiff penalties for the selling, transportation and illegal importation of illegal drugs, such as marijuana, cocaine, heroin, and methamphetamine.

In an affidavit seen by BVI News, Premier Fahie, along with his co-accused, Oleanvine Maynard and her son Kadeem Maynard, are jointly charged with being involved in a conspiracy to import five kilograms or more of a mixture and substance containing a detectable amount of cocaine.

According to the affidavit, this is in violation of 21 U.S.C. Sections 963, 952, and 960(b)(1)(A).

The trio also faces charges of being involved in a conspiracy to launder money. This is in violation of 18 U.S.C. Sections 1956(a)(2)(A), 1956(a)(2)(B)(i), 1956(c)(7)(A), and 1956(c)(7)(B)(iv); all in violation of 18 U.S.C. Section 1956(h).

The report specifically outlines that trafficking in five or more kilograms of cocaine can produce a fine of up to 10 million dollars and imprisonment of no less than 10 years; possibly up to a life sentence.

These penalties are also applicable to a person who may have committed their first such offence, the report says.

Furthermore, any person found guilty of laundering money greater than $500,000 — that is obtained from controlled substance violations — can possibly face up to 20 years imprisonment.

Any determination on what a sentence may look like if the Premier is convicted will ultimately be influenced by factors such as whether there is an early guilty plea and whether cooperation is involved, among other things.

Just yesterday a notice was filed before the US court invoking the Premier’s right to diplomatic immunity. The Premier’s attorney Theresa Van Vliet argued that Premier Fahie is immune from arrest and detention and is entitled to immediate and unconditional release from detention by the United States. 

It remains unclear whether this application before the court has any likelihood of success.

Meanwhile, Premier Fahie is expected to appear once more before Judge Jonathan Goodman tomorrow, Wednesday for a pre-trial detention (bail) hearing and again on May 13 for a preliminary hearing on the charges.

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58 Comments

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  1. THE says:

    citizen

    Like 2
    Dislike 1
  2. Rubber Duck says:

    If you cant do the time, don’t do the crime.

    Like 74
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  3. Highly unlikely. says:

    As a first time offense, its unlikely the disgraced Premier will face life imprisonment.

    He is more likely to serve if convicted a 10 year minimum.

    Former Chief Minister of the Turks and Caicos was accused and convicted of a similar crime. He was convicted in 1985 also in Miami and sentenced to 8 years.

    On the other hand, Panamanian strong man Manuel Noriega was snatched up out of Panama during an American invasion, taken to Miami, where he was tried and convicted of a similar crime in addition to a racketeering charge. He was given 40 years.

    I believe if Mr. Fahie,s diplomatic immunity is waived, his lawyer would advise him appropriately to plea deal and not risk a conviction which will land him significant prison time.

    In my view when its all said and done, we are looking at 8 to 10. I don’t see life. He will be spending some time in prison however short of some miracle on the diplomatic immunity front.

    Like 57
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    • @highly unlikely says:

      he does nor have a diplomatic passport, he is not a diplomat if he had the passport he would already be home. 8-10 if he is lucky

      Like 18
      Dislike 3
      • Naaa says:

        Kinda charge they got on him is life automatic. The fact he’s the head of state of an OT is worse.

        If US dnt charge him, UK will.

    • Lower end of the scale says:

      At the end of the day, this was a sting. There was no cocaine. And the money was not drug ,money – it was DEA bait money. So the charges are over conspiring – following the DEAs solicitation – to traffic and to launder, rather that actual trafficking and laudering. Still a crime, but you would think that would be reflected in the sentencing.

      Like 11
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      • Peaches says:

        Another consideration in the sentencing: a warning to others. Fahie’s arrest was news around the world — no exaggeration. The US will make an example of him to others.

        Like 14
        Dislike 1
      • Um says:

        Conspiracy carries the same weight as the act. Same sentence. Especially for drugs

    • Lily Ann says:

      First time offence?????? He was sent jail for the same thing in the past, plus he bragged about being in the drug game over 20 years

      Like 19
      Dislike 9
      • Highly unlikely. says:

        Appears you have the wrong person in mind Lily Ann. It is a first time before a US court for Mr. Fahie.

        The son of the Director of Ports is the one who claims on audio/video that he has been in the trade for 20 years.

        The disgraced Premier was never in jail before for the crime he is currently being accused of. He was accused of drug trafficking and money laundering in distant past, however no charges were filed.

        Like 13
        Dislike 1
      • @Lily Ann says:

        I don’t even know how BVI news approved your comment with everything statement being false. What’s worse is you found 13 people to like your comment. The Premier already has a bad reputation without you adding to it.

        Like 2
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    • Jones says:

      And if he is released he needs to be tried locally as well. His goose is cooked

      Like 10
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    • Panama Hat says:

      It was Noriegas first offence.

      He got 40 years.

      • Noriega says:

        Noroega incited a war between Panama and the US amongst other things. This was no doubt considered as an aggravating factor for his sentencing. Hence why 40 years would be appropriate.

    • island man says:

      first time offender or first time being caught!!! Read the affidavit and edit your post

      • Highly unlikely. says:

        No need. First time offender and first time being caught is not the same as first time being tried before a court in the US.

        He could have laundered money or drug ran a million times prior but as far as the court and evidence presented, this will be his first case before a US court.

        Suspicion without proof does not equate to multiple cases. Suspicion is not evidence.

    • Not sure says:

      You speak like someone who knows the law but you have to take the relationship between the BVI and the US Government concerning this drugs in to consideration.
      This is the biggest win in DEA history since the US killed Escobar.
      Forget El Chapo, that organization didn’t miss a beat.
      The have caught the head of a government which has given the US the finger for decades when it comes to smuggling drugs in to their country, let alone it’s an off-shore tax haven wealthy Americans use to dodge tax.
      I would be interested to see if the Feds even offer a deal. They might have him banged to rights and nothing sells news in the US more than a succes.ful drug sting saving “millions” *eye roll… of Americans in their war on drugs.
      They are going to sing this from the roof tops while patting themselves on their backs.
      The one saving grace the BVI has right now is the B on the front of the name, because these streets would be full of US troops if this was not a British territory.
      I think he will get the book.

  4. Moses says:

    We need to avoid making these mistakes again. He needs to be made an example of. His betrayal to the trust granted to him needs to be ingrained in our history. Our grandchildren and their grandchildren should learn the lessons of Fahie’s betrayal of his people and our aspiration to govern ourselves. His greed has set us back several generations.

    Like 70
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  5. Not good says:

    This doesn’t sound great. Will it help if we organize a week of prayer and start fasting?

    Like 37
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  6. Hope says:

    I hope is Body wash he is using while there and not soap… God help him if the soap have to fall to the floor.

    Like 20
    Dislike 4
  7. rat race says:

    https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/f5a47d74-c899-11ec-aec3-018778242ce9?shareToken=ffbb73e1bff8a30b9dd7ef2ceef215dc

    He has been doing un-holy things for donkey years. Time he squeals like a pig and all who are guilty get what they deserve. The people need to march about that! Justice for the people! But..oh! the people who are leading the march are the people who are also un-holy. The people who are leading good people into their trap. It’s a rat race. Read the article about poor Andy and his sweet wife.

    Like 15
  8. 1EYE says:

    To me it’s not the cocaine, it’s the money laundering. Even if the cocaine charges are dropped the $$ charges will remain so looking at a 20yrs, 13 on good behaviour to be served either in USA or UK if found guilty. Who eat the cheese? Who was arrested and talked what they knew? Who informed the governor of this info and not he security council? BVI ppl watch alot of movies and tv and swear they understand the greater world. Time to humble ourselves. I don’t believe the rest of cabinet knew anything about Fahie’s activities else the blabber labba mouth one in the story would’ve mentioned it.

    Like 4
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    • Mis Palabras says:

      1EYE, US Federal Prison does not give credit for good behavior, you serve ALL of the time that you have been sentenced to.

      • Collie says:

        You do get good time but not parole. That was done away with some time ago. Esentially you go in with 15% good time in the bank. Your institutional behaviour determines if you do 100% or 85%.

    • prison calculation says:

      If he is a non US national he has to serve 85% of his sentence before any remission. He is also not entitled to a low level of prison (1) if they take the view that he is a gangster, and (2) in any event, as a foreign national he is automatically bumped up one step on the assessment ladder as a flight risk. He may also not be entitled to go on drug or alcohol rehab programs (which can reduce your sentence) if he is to be deported at the end of his sentence.

  9. Plea? says:

    Good. Let him rot in there.

    Or will he take a plea bargain. He’ll sing like a canary to save his large backside. Y’all who have been involved should be shaking in your boots right now.

    Like 18
  10. Laundry Man says:

    He a big Boy.. He can protect his soap.. 😀

  11. 1st District says:

    It is highly unlikely that Mr. Fahie will serve any significant jail time… if convicted at all. What will be interesting to see is what spin he would attempt to put on this crying foul that he was “set up”. A trap can only work if you go into it.
    The damming allegations of wanting $500k up front, needing additional money to payoff his Senegalise fixer, negotiating his percentage of the potential proceeds,securing the safe arrival and departure of the contraband, grooming the next understudy in the seat of premiership for the continuance of this deal.Mr. Fahie played his hand and he played himself. When someone shows you who they are…believe them.

    Like 20
    Dislike 1
  12. Nonsense says:

    Will people stop printing, what life in prison.

  13. Kingdom Come says:

    So what about the port woman. No one seem concerned about her? Port staff certainly happy to get rid of her and RS.

  14. God is love says:

    Matthew:6-14
    If you forgive your people when they sin against you, your father will also forgive you.
    Have some compassion inside your heart 🙏

    Like 4
    Dislike 2
  15. W.E Man says:

    Where is his God now?

  16. J.W says:

    To who? The god of their forefathers or our God above?

  17. Long life says:

    Inmate Fahie should enjoy a long dull life incarcerated in the US Federal Prison System. Initially, he will be held in solitary confinement while he names names in his alleged drug smuggling & money laundering group of co-conspirators. Once that’s over he will be moved around the US prison system every 5 years or so until he’s 80-90 years old then he’ll be moved to a minimum security prison which is similar to the Adina Donovan Home on main street. He can’t escape so his useless life will end in some obscure building somewhere in middle America. He will never return to the BVI alive, only for scattering his *** ashes somewhere here.

    Like 5
    Dislike 2
  18. Maverick says:

    I dislike the bad taste brought about by the allegations surrounding the Premier, but by virtue of his office, he when abroad enjoys full immunity from criminal jurisdiction and inviolability. That immunity and that inviolability protect the individual concerned against any act of authority of another State which would hinder him or her in the performance of his or her duties. Just a minute, I questioned a youth about the allegation and his words, “I though he was a better person, he has set a bad example for us and has embarrassed our territory.” This doesn’t mean the US cannot push back until Fahie becomes irrelevant and still prosecute him. Questions : Is Fahie the right person to request immunity? If the Governor is the right person will he give him his blessing? If the Constitution is suspended its over. It would have been nicer if Fahie had humbly come out and apologize to QE 2, The Territory and His Family and admonished our youths and fellow politicians not to take the route he has taken. I intend however to fight this, because by virtue of my office this matter has been improperly handled.

    Like 1
    Dislike 1
  19. Sad Situation says:

    Its clear people did not read the affidavit. Smh. He will be back home in no time as no drugs were involved and that he is only held on “conspiracy” which means all the evidence They have is voice and video recordings of the plan. No actions of the said crimes were committed as the plan did not fully unfold. The whole thing was planned by the DEA and one of them Got caught taking the bait which is why its conspiracy. Andrew needs to claim MINIMAL INVOLVEMENT, which means he knows of the deal and knows the so-called drug dealer and decided to ride along or Lack of PRESENCE AT THE SCENE as Mr. Fahie WAS NOT at the scene of the sale or transaction of the said drugs not did he even see the drugs it was all talk and no action.

    Like 1
    Dislike 4
  20. DEA affidavit says:

    These 19 pages are the main evidence against inmate Fahie in a US prison in Miami. In the extremely unlikely event Fahie’s application for diplomatic immunity succeeds in Miami he will only be trading his Miami cell for a new cell in the UK. He would not be returning to the BVI as a free man or even a fugitive.

    Thanks to numerous reciprocal agreements between the UK and the USA regarding drug offense evidence the DEA affidavit is admissible in a UK court. The air conditioned cell in Miami is probably a better choice than an unheated cell in the UK. Either way he is gone for life behind bars on one side of the pond or the other.

    • Think again says:

      I would take a British jail over a ged pen any day of the week. If I was doing 15 yrs I would cut off a finger if I thought it would help me getting extradited to the UK.

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