By BVI Platinum News
Updated 6:39 AM AST, Thu May 12, 2022
(PLTM) - The fallout from the detention of the Managing Director of the BVI Ports Authority (BVIPA) Oleanvine Maynard on drug trafficking and money laundering charges will result in a shake-up in the management of the ports.
Citing continued security concerns, Premier and Minister of Finance, Dr. Natalio Wheatley has indicated that the Chairman of the Board Kelvin Hodge, who was appointed on May 13, 2020, will tender his resignation.
"The term of the remaining members will expire within days, and a new board of suitably qualified persons will be appointed," Dr. Wheatley told residents on Wednesday, May 11.
He added, "This decision was not taken lightly. However, given the remaining concerns about security at the ports after the arrest of Managing Director Ms. Oleanvine Maynard and the details of her activities described in the affidavit filed in the US courts, we must refresh the Board so its integrity is beyond reproach.
Dr. Wheatley assured that the legal and practical issues involved in terminating Maynard's appointment are being examined, and updates in this regard will be forthcoming.
"I want to reassure you that the ports will continue to operate. The soon to be appointed board will be tasked with the appointment of an Interim Managing Director while the recruitment of a substantive Managing Director is underway," Dr. Wheately stated.
In terms of the security of the ports, Dr. Wheatley said he has scheduled an urgent meeting with the Governor and Commissioner of Police to discuss some of the security concerns and what measures can be taken to address them.
"I want to remind everyone what I said before. Change will be hard. It will be painful. People we know and care about will be affected. However, in the end, it will be for the better," Dr. Wheatley stated.
Maynard and then Premier Andrew Fahie were part of a Government team attending major cruise meetings in Miami when they were reportedly arrested separately on Thursday, April 28, having gone to a Miami airport in connection with a $700,000 cash advance to help use the BVI ports to move Columbian cocaine for a Mexico drug cartel.
In exchange, the defendants would make millions, which would be funneled through different businesses and bank accounts to hide the money’s source, U.S officials say.
According to U.S. officials, Maynard’s son, Kadeem Maynard was also arrested on St. Thomas as part of the sting operation conducted by the U.S.
According to the allegations of the criminal complaint affidavit, during March and April, Fahie and Maynards participated in a series of meetings with a U.S informant posing as a drug trafficker to broker the deal.
Fahie and Mrs. Maynard would secure required licenses, shield the cocaine-filled boats while in BVI’s ports, and grease the palm of a potentially problematic government official, says the affidavit.
They discussed bringing 3,000 kilograms of cocaine through a BVI port as a test run, followed by 3,000 kilograms once or twice a month for four months. Fahie and Maynard would get a percentage of the cocaine’s sales – millions of dollars, it is alleged.
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