A Florida court has granted former Premier Andrew Fahie’s request to bump his trial date to July 17, a year after it was initially set to begin.
The trial — which also includes former BVI Ports Authority Managing Director Oleanvine Maynard and her son Kadeem Maynard — initially was scheduled to start on July 18 of this year, but it was shifted to January after the defendants’ attorneys previously asked for more preparation time.
Mr. Fahie’s request for a second extension came less than three weeks after a Nov. 9 superseding indictment added a new count — “interstate and foreign travel in aid of racketeering” — against him and Ms. Maynard in addition to the three they were already facing.
In part because of this new charge, Mr. Fahie’s Florida attorney, Theresa Van Vliet, argued that he needs additional time to prepare. In her Nov. 28 filing with the US District Court for the Southern District of Florida, Ms. Van Vliet also noted the prosecution’s delays in processing recordings included in the evidence against Mr. Fahie and his co-defendants, who are accused of conspiring to smuggle cocaine into the United States through VI waters.
“The government is still in the process of transcribing the voluminous audio recordings in this matter,” Ms. Van Vliet wrote, adding that on Oct. 25 US Attorney Shane Butland told her he anticipated that the government would complete its draft transcriptions by Nov. 30. “While the government has been providing initial drafts of transcripts since that time, they are not yet complete or even final drafts. It is unlikely that the process will be completed by the end of November.”
The defence attorney also stated that prosecutors have not disclosed information regarding a confidential source they are using in the case. On Oct. 13, she wrote, she requested such information, “including but not limited to verification of the identity of the source.”
However, the US government declined on Oct. 26, Ms. Van Vliet stated. Because of the “refusal to confirm, or refute, the identity of the confidential source,” the attorney wrote, she now needed to submit the matter to the court, and she was anticipating doing so immediately after the Thanksgiving holiday. Ms. Van Vliet added that she also anticipated filing “subsequent substantive motions with constitutional underpinnings upon verification of the confidential informant’s identity.” The defence lawyer pledged not to identify the informant in any public filing.
Under the original grand jury indictment filed on May 10, the three defendants were accused of conspiracy to import a controlled substance, conspiracy to engage in money laundering, and attempted money laundering.
The Nov. 9 superseding indictment included the original charges as well as the additional count against Mr. Fahie and Ms. Maynard, who pleaded not guilty to all charges when they were arraigned on Nov. 16 and 17, respectively. The superseding indictment did not add any new charges against Mr. Maynard, but he was nevertheless arraigned again on Nov. 16 for the original charges, and he again pleaded not guilty, according to court records.
Mr. Fahie is currently on house arrest at his daughters’ rented Florida apartment, and the Maynards remain in custody pending trial.
Attorneys for the Maynards did not object to Mr. Fahie’s request to reschedule the trial, according to Ms. Van Vliet.