A Heather Cole Column – The New Triangular Trade?
For want of a nail the shoe was lost.
For want of a shoe the horse was lost.
For want of a horse the rider was lost.
For want of a rider the battle was lost.
For want of a battle the kingdom was lost.
And all for the want of a horseshoe nail. -Unknown
In essence this rhyme is about a seemingly unimportant act that can lead to grave consequences. Some call it the effects of causation others the chain of causality.
In our scenario, there is no nail, no horse, no rider, or kingdom to be lost. Instead we have stolen vehicles, a check, a murder and guns and drugs. We have discovered a chain that has blown the cover of the New Triangular Trade.
Since we have established in the last article that vehicles were removed from the Bridgetown Port without the proper paperwork, we have learnt that disassembled vehicles are now part of the trade. One reader wanted a story done on what happens at Transtec. They informed that one of those luxury vehicles regularly receives service there.
Our scenario starts with the check. Payment by a check to be precise. An act so trivial but lead to a chain of events. Had the payment been in cash, an Englishman would not be dead but I am skipping ahead of myself. Checks are traceable. Checks contains names, dollar amounts, bank names, account numbers and check numbers. More than likely the Englishman who had already exchanged the vehicle for the check would have had to return to England to deposit it, if his bank did not accept deposits by taking a picture of the check with his phone. We do not know if this was done. Even if the check was deposited by phone, it still had to clear the bank unless he had deposits to cover the amount of the check. We do not know the date on the check. One wonders with the Englishman still on the island how he would get access to that amount of cash to make his payment. Did he have a local bank account? Was the check written on the day of his untimely demise? No one has borne the burden of proof that this check does NOT exist.
Cash is the “legal” tender for the underground, not checks. So, there was therefore no cash to pay for his purchase which we have not been able to confirm if it was guns or drugs or a combination of both but for the lack of cash, an Englishman was beaten to death. One wonders if the person who exchanged the check for the vehicle is aware that they had ultimately signed the death warrant for the Englishman. However, that is speculative without a known motive but a complicity still remains.
We know that a stash of guns or drugs or of both guns and drugs were already delivered to the Englishman that were not paid for. It is unknown if the police have recovered that stash or if they have already left the island. We know that the police have 5 men on remand for his murder.
There is a crisis in Venezuela that has led to a lack of food and money. There has been well documented evidence is both Guyana and Trinidad of instances where Venezuelans have been caught as they tried to sell guns in those respective territories. Guns are not manufactured in Barbados yet they now becoming increasingly available.
The mere fact that there is an abundance of guns on the local market means that the Venezuelans have already established trade here.
A triangular trade is trade between three ports or countries. When sugar was King a few centuries ago, that term was used to reference the removal of millions of peoples from West Africa to work under the conditions of slavery to produce sugar which was shipped across the Atlantic creating a class of wealthy individual who became known as sugar barons and the Plantocracy.
The story an Englishman being murdered in Barbados is therefore part of a clandestine activity that can be termed the New Triangular Trade. The guns and drugs are going elsewhere because the local demand on the market for drugs has not changed. Barbados is too small to make the gun trade within the island profitable. So most likely than not, it is being used as a trans-shipment point to Europe and North America for both guns and drugs.
What the Englishman’s murder has brought to light is a lucrative underworld trade of luxury vehicles, guns and drugs. We do not know who all the players are. The only things we know for sure is that the new trade is creating a new class of wealth owners; is bringing destruction by gun violence; and that guns are the “new sugar” coming straight outta Venezuela.