Submitted by Caleb Pilgrim
Re Inniss, a reasonable person might acquaint himself with any relevant rules of engagement. Such rules will inevitably vary from jurisdiction (e.g Barbados) to jurisdiction (e.g Florida or New York). But, familiarity with them can be instructive if not edifying. It can even save the inattentive and the unwary aggravation in terms of time, money, emotional anxiety and even personal liberty.
Donville’s case is important, not only because it represents a stunning reversal of fortune, a reckoning for him personally, as well as any possible harm to Barbados and its image abroad.
It is also important to Caribbean politicians as a whole, not just those a previous P.M described as a bunch of “wild boys”, or those who would kill and feast on “the fatted calf”. (Some may recall that the U.S once sought the extradition of a certain Sir. Lynden Pindling – the Bahamas – to face trial In the U.S. Mr. Bouterse’s – Suriname – problems may also come to mind. Others routinely excoriate Dr. Gonsalves – St. Vincent – in this blog).
But, certainly everyone knows that the U.S, despite the fact that it has only 4% to 5% of the world’s population, leads the world in terms of the number of prisoners with some 2.3 million incarcerated (25 %). In Barbadian vernacular this is a sort oBig “Dodds”.
(See -incomplete – List of American federal politicians convicted of crimes – Wikipedia
List of American federal politicians convicted of crimes – Wikipedia
See also List of American state and local politicians convicted of crimes – Wikipedia
List of American state and local politicians convicted of crimes – Wikipedia
The late Judge John Sirica, a Watergate Judge, was remembered as having said that if a jury had voted to convict President Nixon, he (Sirica) would have sent him to jail. The Reader will therefore understand why President Ford hastily pardoned Nixon.
Even as of the time of this writing, there are at least a few Prosecutors (e.g James, Vance, Racine et al) patiently waiting in plain view to rendezvous with Trump just after high noon come January 20, 2021. He (Trump) is well aware of this fact. Hence all the increased chatter about pardons for his henchmen, political supporters, family and friends, and even pardoning himself).
(See: NY Prosecutor Hires Forensic Accountants as Criminal Investigation Into Trump Organization Escalates
NY Prosecutor Hires Forensic Accountants as Criminal Investigation Into Trump Organization Escalates
Re Inniss’s prospects, a lawyer once related to me how he had had a case before the Eastern District Court of New York (E.D.N.Y). An elderly West Indian client passed. Her Executor, following certain stereotypes, retained NY counsel to settle the Estate. A problem arose when NY counsel sold a brown stone building and simply forgot to pay the proceeds to the Estate. (As an aside, it is gratifying to read of the new Chief Justice, Cheltenham, cautioning new members of the Bar to refrain from borrowing their clients’ funds). Proceedings ensued thereafter.
The matter came before the E.D.N.Y Chief Judge, the late David Trager, Judge in the Crown Heights case where Lemrick Nelson was accused of murdering a Rabbinical student, Yankel Rosenbaum, presumably in retaliation for the murder of a black child, Gavin Cato.
My lawyer friend advised me that his matter only resolved after some intense legal skirmishing and the lawyer was persuaded to disgorge the proceeds. His impression was that the EDNY, at least in his opinion, constituted a hostile work environment.
Thus, Mr. Inniss, metaphorically, finds himself like a man with a glock cocked against his temple, as he sits in anticipation of sentencing scheduled for Jan 23, 2021(?).
Mr. Inniss apparently fired his trial counsel, for whatever reason(s). He may not have agreed with his lawyers. He may now pursue his right to appeal and draw out the process.
However, claims such as “ineffective assistance of counsel” have typically been rejected in the overwhelming majority of cases (1 in 5, according to some sources). Similarly, the Judge’s Jury Charge will most likely have followed standard instructions in similar such cases. It might even be argued that Inniss, the Former International Business Minister, did not have a jury of his peers. Yet, none of these arguments may prevail on appeal. Hopefully, Inniss, Tasker and/or any possible corruptocrat will emerge sadder, wiser and chastened, by experience.
Happy New Year, y’all!y
In my lifetime I am fairly certain that hundreds, maybe thousands of Bajans have been arrested and tried and convicted in the United States for everything for double murder [remember the old guy who killed his girlfriend in the fish market and who had previously killed 2 people in the USA, been convicted, served a long sentence and been sent home] I am certain that none of us can even remember his name now although he made an appearance in court in 2020, an appeal I think. The truth is, nobody cares about “little” people, nobody cares in Greg from Grazettes or Paul from Pondside is arrested in the USA. But a nice, fat, juicy former Cabinet Minister garners plenty of press. It is the difference between a Bajan police offices, catching Shona the shoplifter, again; and catching Buddy Brathwaite or Winston Hall. I mean nobody makes songs about the petty criminal Shona the shoplifter. Nobody cares.
But a nice, fat, former government Minister, a real-real maguffy…
David January 2, 2021 7:46 PM
The point @David is making is the salient one.
It was ICBL’s parent, BF&M, who contacted the authorities. This would ‘lead us’ to believe, they [BF&M] had no knowledge of the payments. They have/had several other businesses, in addition to their then 51.4% stake in ICBL. And were concerned for their own skin, and the potential harm it could cause.
The chances of the US authorities catching this matter, were likely slim to none.
However. Given the timeline, how DI got no birdie whispers of pending trouble, is baffling.
This might help
Yes, I agree with David BU.
I read additional information, which also included the letter associated with the link you provided that one of the mitigating factors referenced by the US Government and origin of proceedings were ICBL made a voluntary self-disclosure of the transactions.
Also listed on the indictment was, on August 17, 2015 a wire transfer in the amount of US$16,536.73 from a “Bermuda Company” (BF&M) account in Bermuda, to a bank account of a bank in Elmont, New York, in the name of Inniss’ friend’s dental practice.
And, on April 18, 2016, another wire transfer in the amount of $20,000 from (BF&M) bank account, to the dental practice’s bank account.
Remember, the crime originated in Barbados. After reading Sections 3 (1), 6 and 7 of the Barbados Prevention of Corruption Act, I’m wondering what are the reasons behind ICBL preferring to involve the US authorities and co-operate with them, rather than reporting the matter to RBPF?
The insurance contracts involved cost Barbadian taxpayers US$686,827.50 (BD$1,373,655) and the profit realised from the illegal transaction, was US$93,940.19 (BD$187,880.38).
I’m also wondering why would the US Court order ICBL to disgorge US$93,940.19, which was earned off the backs of Barbadian taxpayers and outside any US jurisdiction…….. and pay it to the US Treasury, rather than Barbados’ Treasury?
The Harder They Come
The Harder They Fall
Al Capone died of cardiac arrest in 1947, but his decline began earlier. After his transfer to Alcatraz prison, his mental and physical condition deteriorated from paresis (a late stage of syphilis)
Notorious criminal John Dillinger—America’s “Public Enemy No. 1″—was killed in a hail of bullets fired by federal agents.
The Office of Foreign Assets Control (“OFAC”) of the US Department of the Treasury administers and enforces economic and trade sanctions based on US foreign policy and national security goals against targeted foreign countries and regimes, terrorists, international narcotics traffickers, those engaged in activities related to the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, and other threats to the national security, foreign policy or economy of the United States.
You are really wondering why they ordered the money to be paid in to them??????
I know you aren’t really wondering.
“Now the satanic terrorist, Trump..”
I thought he was a rapist?!
This one a called the voice of the poor
by the number one sound in the whole wide world
Off topic it seems like what we feared as far as possible covid community spread in Barbados has occured.This will no doubt test the efforts of the government and the frontline workers all because of idiotic behaviour of a few prison officers and BDF officers who should have known better.The folloqing persons should be happy Mariposa, CCC, Hal Austin , Baje and Waru plus the other daily doom and gloomers on BU.As for the rest of us let us hope the tireless health workers can contain this latest outbreak as much as possible with the help of all rightthinking bajans with the help of the almighty god above.Let,s pray for the best outcome.
Above and beyond lets pray that God remove the stubbornness that has hardened Mia heart and which has given way for COVID to make way across the lives of many barbadians
I am not hoping for the worst. I live here. BUT MIA AMOR MOTTLEY must be held accountable.
“all because of idiotic behaviour of a few prison officers and BDF officers who should have known better.”
so typical of the empty headed yardfowl….no it’s not prison officers and BDF soldiers to blame….IT’S MIA…she allowed diseased tourists into the country….they have no such authority, it’s Mia caused this, ya will not get away with blaming Black people for yall wicked actions. Intelligent people know better than to INVITE diseased people into their countries DURING A PLAGUE.
only yardfowls are glad at Black people’s misery, yall support the thefts of people’s taxes, pension money, ya support racism, apartheid and disenfranchisment of Black people in Barbados….that’s more yall style.
The US levied fines/disgorgement based on criminality attached to “laundering money” (on their soil). There is nothing preventing Barbadian courts from levying similar fines against ICBL for corruption? Nor against the participants in the bribery. It is not an either/or?
I am unsure it was a reporting ‘preference’, as opposed to a need to deal with a foe who could cause a lot more pain, in the other (primary) business areas of BF&M. As has transpired, they have sold their interest in ICBL, they are ‘out’ of Barbados.
I would ‘guess’, any sale included ‘insurance’ in the case of additional actions, related to the two payments?
Appreciate why this topic is ‘newsworthy’ again. The sought extradition of Mr.Tasker to face DOJ charges. Nothing on co-charged Mrs Innes, who resigned from ICBL early in 2017, and much later (based on social media posts) returned home to Canada. We know from the much publicized Huawei employee Meng Wanzhou, Canada and the US have an extradition agreement.
The United States government started extradition proceedings against former ICBL executive Ingrid Innes.
There is the question on the table – do we have players at BIDC culpable?
Do we have other players in Barbados culpable?
Should local authorities have acted to investigate/arrest locals by now?
Is it too late?
What will be interesting is when Innes and Tasker give evidence in the US court on how the payments were authorised.
Does the buck really stop at the Barbados CEO?
Think about it.
I am surprise at the legal effort given to investigating/punishing a $36 K crime.
Is there more to follow? Another shoe to drop…
We have discussed this so many times, it is nit about the amount.
@ David January 10, 2021 5:38 AM
“There is the question on the table – do we have players at BIDC culpable?
Do we have other players in Barbados culpable?
Should local authorities have acted to investigate/arrest locals by now?
Is it too late?”
You have resurrected an issue which was raised last year but covered up by the ‘pretend’ professional (but politically partisan) intrusion of Green(e) & Co.
The then BoD and CEO must have been aware that the instruction from the minister was not Kosher- either legally or morally speaking- the same way the Millar finance lady was aware of what was going on was not ‘right’ both professionally and legally speaking especially when dealing with “politically-exposed” parties.
Too besides (to use some good ole West Indian lingo), it is known in certain circles that the then perceived bribery transaction was brought to the attention of the local law enforcement agencies which, to use a well-worn idiom, turned a blind eye while pretending to have ears full of politically-manufactured wax.
The country Barbados will have to carry on its back this now internationally-known monkey which has powdered its country’s face with this petty act of corrupting shame to last for a long time to come.
“Instead of politicians, let the monkeys govern the countries; at least they will steal only the bananas!” ― Mehmet Murat ildan
This was the first article I found on the extradition matters
This article claims Inniss is to be sentenced in April 2021, while the Nation article posted today, claims “later this month”.
The question remains, WHO knew WHAT and WHEN.
@Crusoe’s question is one key. During the Inniss trial, under oath, the BF&M CEO, and ICBL Chair, Wight; denied knowing anything about the payments. And stated he had questioned the payments to both Innes and Tasker “to no avail”.
Re: culpability of anyone at the BIDC, what one would really like to know was the decision making process. Was management or the Board squeezed?
For accuracy I question the statement in the Nation “In 2018, she and her husband Byren Innes became co-founders of Carilend, the first peer-to peer-lending site in Barbados.” I ‘believe’ the involvement of Byren Innes in Carilend, pre-dated 2018.
Meanwhile former Minister Inniss…”I was not bribed by anyone or any company in Barbados or anywhere and will continue to fight these charges and convictions.” This is at least one reason why the testimony of Innes and Tasker under oath would be beneficial, given the various reasons given by Kamante Millar as to WHAT the payments to Crystal Dental Labs were for.
Is it coincidental the CEO during the period of the crime has ridden off into the sunset?
“Is it too late?”
this from the Caribbean Life news article I posted
“for them to bring some five-year-old charges now for whatever reason? I don’t know if it is because Mr. Inniss is up there slipping through their fingers,” Pilgrim asked, implying that though convicted Inniss may escape prison time.”(quote)
<blockquote>Inniss’ bail bid fails
by MARIA BRADSHAW
WITHOUT REPRESENTATION OF an attorney, former Government Minister Donville Inniss filed a motion to be released from prison on bail pending the outcome of his appeal case.
However, last Tuesday, Judge Kiyo Matsumoto, who sent Inniss to prison for two years after he was found guilty of money laundering offences, denied the motion, finding that it was improperly filed.
Inniss, who is serving his sentence at a Federal Prison filed the motion pro se (on his own) on November 12, 2021.
However, the court ruled that it could not entertain his self-representation since he had an attorney.
In the nine-page motion, Inniss argued that he should be released on bail, as there was no clear and convincing evidence that he was either a risk of flight or danger to the community and that his appeal raised a substantial question of law likely to result in a reversal of the conviction on direct appeal.
He wrote: “Defendant respectfully submits that he is not likely to flee nor pose a danger to any other person or the community if released on bail pending appeal. As evinced by his bail history, which included defendant being released on bond throughout the proceedings in the district court
– including post-sentencing – defendant is not likely to flee if released on bail”.
In terms of his claim that his conviction was certain to be reversed, he submitted that the conduct alleged as a factual basis for the conspiracy and substantive offences did not constitute an offence under the federal money laundering statutes and “as such, the judgment of conviction is certain to be reversed on direct appeal”.
However, in their response, the prosecutors asked the court to deny Inniss’ pro se motion as they contended that he was “represented by counsel and, therefore, the Court should not entertain his pro se motion for release on bail pending appeal. Second, the defendant’s claim on appeal is foreclosed by Second Circuit precedent and, therefore, he has not raised a substantial question of law or fact that is likely to result in reversal.”
The prosecutors pointed out that while defendants possess both the right to appear pro se and to appoint counsel, ordinarily “those rights cannot both be exercised at the same time.”
They said: “A district court does have the discretion to permit so-called “hybrid representation”; however, it need not do so unless a defendant can offer a “compelling reason”.
In terms of Inniss’ claim that his appeal was likely to succeed, the prosecutors charged that he had not met his burden of showing that his appeal raises a substantial question of law or fact and furthermore that his argument that the conspiracy and substantive offences did not constitute an offence under the federal money laundering statutes had been rejected by the Second Circuit Court in another case.
Judge Matsumoto agreed. She noted that the court “must determine the following factors: (1) that defendant is not likely to flee or pose a danger to the
safety of any other person or the community if released; (2) that the appeal is not for the purpose of delay; (3) that the appeal raises a substantial question of law or fact; and (4) that if that substantial question is determined favourably to defendant, that decision is likely to result in reversal or an order for a new trial on all counts on which imprisonment has been imposed.”
The judge agreed that Inniss was not a flight risk, stating: “The Court, having considered defendant’s bail history, agrees that his release would not present a flight risk. Furthermore, defendant was not convicted of any crime of violence and did not have any prior conviction; as such, his release would not pose a danger to the safety of any other person or the community. However, the Court finds that defendant has failed to demonstrate that his appeal raises a substantial question of law or fact and therefore denies his motion for release pending appeal.”
While pointing out that the decision to grant or deny “hybrid representation” lies solely within the discretion of the trial court, the judge stated: “The Court finds that defendant’s filing of the instant pro se motion was improper in light of his status as a counselled defendant… Defendant has been, and still is represented in the instant action by counsel, who is also the counsel of record for defendant’s appeal before the Second Circuit…”