BVI premier, port director charged in Miami in cocaine smuggling scheme
Andrew Alturo Fahie, BVI’s premier
Press Release
April 29, 2022
BVI premier, port director charged in Miami in cocaine smuggling scheme

The premier of the British Virgin Islands (BVI) and the director of the BVI’s ports were arrested Thursday at a Miami-area airport by federal agents on charges of conspiring to import cocaine into the United States and money laundering, according to U.S. authorities.

 The Miami Herald reported that Andrew Alturo Fahie, BVI’s premier, and Oleanvine Maynard, manager director of the port authority, were taken into custody by Drug Enforcement Administration agents at Miami-Opa-locka Executive Airport.

 The foreign officials were arrested after they met with undercover DEA agents posing as cocaine traffickers to check out an alleged shipment of $700,000 in cash on an airplane that they believed was destined for the British Virgin Islands, authorities told the Miami Herald.

 The DEA agents were posing as members of the Mexican Sinaloa cartel. Both government officials, who were in Miami for a cruise convention, went to the airport Thursday morning to see the alleged load of cash after DEA agents told them that the money was a payoff for allowing the cartel’s future cocaine loads to be transported through the British territory to the United States, authorities said. The British territory, an archipelago, has a population of only 30,000 and is adjacent to the U.S. Virgin Islands.

 Both Fahie and Maynard, who are being held at the Federal Detention Center, are scheduled to have their first appearances in Miami federal court on April 29.

 A third person, Kadeem Maynard, the son of BVI’s port director, was also arrested Thursday in connection with the undercover DEA case, but not in Miami, authorities said.

 All three defendants were charged with conspiring to import more than five kilos of cocaine into the United States and conspiring to commit money laundering. A DEA criminal complaint and affidavit were expected to be filed in Miami federal court yesterday afternoon. It was not immediately clear if any of the three defendants had retained attorneys. In response to the arrests of the premier and the others, BVI Governor John Rankin issued a statement saying the U.S. government informed United Kingdom officials of the drug-trafficking case in Miami.

 “As this is a live investigation I have no further information on the arrest nor can I comment any further on it,” said Rankin, who was appointed BVI’s governor by the United Kingdom. (Miami Herald)