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Premier of British Virgin Islands held on drug smuggling charge

Premier of British Virgin Islands is held in Miami on drug smuggling and money laundering charges

  • Andrew Fahie, 51, is British Virgin Island’s minister of finance and premier 
  • He was detained in Miami for money laundering and drug smuggling charges  
  • Foreign Secretary Liz Truss said she was ‘appalled by these serious allegations’ 

The premier of the British Virgin Islands was arrested in the US last night on charges relating to drug trafficking and money laundering. 

Andrew Fahie, 51, who also serves as the territory’s minister of finance, was detained in Miami for money laundering and conspiring to import a controlled drug. 

Foreign Secretary Liz Truss said she was ‘appalled by these serious allegations’, which also follow an inquiry into embezzlement by officials.

She said last night: ‘I have spoken to the governor of the British Virgin Islands (the Queen’s representative in the territory) and he will be holding an emergency meeting of the territory’s cabinet… He will set out next steps (today), including urgent publication of the inquiry’s report.’ 

Andrew Fahie (pictured), 51, who also serves as the territory’s minister of finance, was detained in Miami for money laundering and conspiring to import a controlled drug

Foreign Secretary Liz Truss (pictured) said she was ‘appalled by these serious allegations’, which also follow an inquiry into embezzlement by officials

In September 2021, Fahie backed a ‘self-determination’ referendum that could see the Queen’s removal as the British Virgin Islands’ head of state. 

The move came after then Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab ordered an inquiry into allegations that party officials had embezzled taxpayer money sent to help the islands in the wake of hurricanes. 

The independent probe was announced in January 2021. ‘The BVI is not corrupt’, Mr Fahie said at the time. 

‘Anyone that makes that statement is trying to damage the BVI’s reputation, and is an irresponsible person.’ 

Mr Rankin said last night: ‘I realise this will be shocking news for people in the territory. I would call for calm at this time.’

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