Corruption in the British Virgin Islands? Whatever next?

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The Guardian reports this morning that:

The premier of the British Virgin Islands (BVI) has been arrested in a sting operation in Miami on charges of conspiring to import cocaine into the United States and money laundering.

The BVI governor, John Rankin, confirmed in a statement that Andrew Fahie had been arrested on Thursday morning, saying: “I realise this will be shocking news for people in the territory. And I would call for calm at this time.”

Oleanvine Maynard, the manager director of the Caribbean territory's port authority, and her son Kadeem were also detained in the operation.

Compared to other Prime Ministers who I think should have charges brought against them this seems like a low-grade offence, but leaving such comparison aside, and noting that no one is guilty until proven so in court, that such an allegation might be made does not surprise me.

The British Virgin Islands, as I have recounted over many years, including in two books on tax havens, is a centre for international crime. It provides more than 400,000 companies that are used by corruption service providers. I can think of quite literally no legitimate reason for the use of a BVI company, unless you are running a store in the BVI that is.

Is it surprising then that such allegations might be made? Not at all. You have, in my opinion, to be a defender of corruption to be engaged in defending the activities of the BVI, as its Premier is. And corruption corrupts.

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