Policing Invisible Crime

April 30, 2018 Crime , Opinion , OPINION/NEWS , OTHER

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Ricardo Swire



CARICOM internal security officials are routinely tasked with securing territorial borders, enforcing law and maintaining social order. Regional trends show the white collar crime category is often overlooked because of the perpetrators’ social status. High-value invisible crimes do not involve gunplay or physical aggression aimed at victims. Annually, the clandestine activity negatively impacts national revenues.


White collar crime intermingles with corruption and physically manifests as drugs/arms trafficking, murder and violence. Such security breaches impact national economic development. It discourages foreign investment and influences the misallocation of resources. Invisible crime has slowed foreign remittances to some CARICOM members and influenced corruption of governments and private institutions in others. Caribbean governments’ efforts to confront transnational white collar crime are mainly supported by America, United Kingdom and Canada.


Washington’s assistance with prosecution of Caribbean high-profile white collar criminals acted out in Allen Stanford’s removal from Antigua. The American was originally insulated, while living on the Leeward Islands member state, by his national knighthood. US diplomatic pressure contributed to Jamaican drugs trafficker and crime lord “Dudus” Coke’s forceful extradition from Denham Town Kingston, his stateside prosecution and jail sentence. A former Trinidad & Tobago Minister of National Security battles a US extradition order.


An updated regional intelligence analysis noted white collar crime is morphing. CARICOM’s national taxes vary from island to island each having a niche. Complex invisible crime schemes, such as tax fraud via offshore banking, attach to select CARIOM member’s financial services markets. Oxfam estimated tax avoidance schemes deprive developing countries of as much as US$100 billion yearly. The international tax haven lists generally include Anguilla, Barbados, Bermuda, Cayman Islands (CI), the Bahamas, British Virgin Islands (BVI), Dominica, St Kitts & Nevis.


Bermuda is ranked third among the world’s top fifty reinsurers. The Cayman Islands have the most hedge funds. The British Virgin Islands is principal residence for international business companies. St Kitts & Nevis noted in several reports as a “money laundering paradise for drug lords and assorted criminals.” On Barbados officials declared the national system is not structured to encourage tax evasion. The Barbadian tax system is supposedly designed to assist international business expansion.


Governmental tax treaties, with Canada and other international partners, were developed and guidelines established for tax liabilities that originate from business and investment activities. Evidence suggests Barbados’ niche has been exploited to evade Canada Revenue Agency taxes. Glenhuron Bank Ltd registered its Head Office at Building 05, Bridgetown St Michael, Barbados. The transnational financial entity mandated to invest surplus Canadian cash until required by its parent company or affiliates.


Glenhuron Bank Ltd possessed attributes required to meet Canada’s Foreign Accrual Property Income exemption. Several years later parent organization Loblaw Companies Ltd had not paid Canadian taxes, but instead transferred the cash to Glenhuron in Barbados. The offshore Bank was later liquidated and revenue used towards purchase of Shoppers Drug Mart in Toronto, Canada. In December 2017 Shoppers Drug Mart plus Aphria Inc. (TSX:APH) and Alimentation Couche-Tard Inc. (TSX:ATD.B) amalgamated to retail online marijuana.





Ricardo Swire - Tuck Magazine

Ricardo Swire

Ricardo Swire is the Principal Consultant at R-L-H Security Consultants & Business Support Services and writes on a number of important issues.

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