RocaNews - 🌊 Jake from S̶t̶a̶t̶e̶ ̶F̶a̶r̶m̶  FBI

May 2, 2022

Hope you all had a great weekend — at least a better one than Andrew Fahie (more below). Unlike McDonald's amid our pleas to bring back the McRib, we are listening to your feedback. We are introducing a rotational "fun" section at the bottom of the newsletter. Today we bring back Games.

Sign up for the Roca Current →

Key Stories

Potential Illegal Searches
Overview

  • The FBI may have conducted millions of illegal searches of Americans’ data between Dec. 2020 and 2021, according to a new US government report
  • It said Americans may have been unintentionally caught up in the FBI's investigation of national security threats, and of Russian hackers in particular
  • The FBI was acting under a post-9/11 law that allows surveillance of “foreign powers” and “agents of foreign powers” suspected of espionage or terrorism
  • Contact info, social security numbers, and collected communications were among the data examined
 DIG DEEPER 
The FBI conducted 3.9M searches while attempting to investigate and prevent threats to national security, the report by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence found. Many of these may have been illegal, although the report also said there was no evidence of deliberate privacy violations.

British Virgin Islands Leader Arrested
Overview

  • US officers arrested Andrew Fahie, the elected leader of the British Virgin Islands (BVI), in Miami, on drug trafficking and money laundering charges
  • The BVI, a UK-controlled archipelago in the Caribbean, are known for sheltering businesses: 370,000+ companies are registered there, many because of lax business reporting rules
  • Court documents said that Fahie allowed DEA agents posing as drug traffickers to ship cocaine from Colombia to the US via the BVI. The docs said Fahie used a calculator to confirm his cut: $7.8M
  • The BVI Ports Authority’s leader was also arrested
 DIG DEEPER 
Get the full story in today's Wrap!

DHS Establishes Disinformation Board
Overview

  • The US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is establishing a “Disinformation Governance Board” to prevent the spread of what it deems misinformation
  • The department's secretary said the board’s goal is to use the DHS’ resources to fight misinformation. It will be led by “disinformation expert” Nina Jankowicz
  • When asked about it, President Biden’s press secretary said, “It sounds like the objective of the board is to prevent disinformation and misinformation from traveling around the country in a range of communities. I’m not sure who opposes that effort”
  • Few other details have been released
 DIG DEEPER
The news emerged during a congressional hearing, when the DHS secretary was asked how the department was fighting fake news among minority communities. The DHS refused an Associated Press interview request about the board.

Pay + Benefits Increase at Records
Overview

  • US companies spent 4.5% more on their workers in the first quarter of 2022 vs. the first quarter of 2021
  • The increase, which represents higher spending on pay and benefits, is the biggest jump since the government began tracking these figures in 2001
  • The increase is a result of more employee demands post-pandemic, and a labor shortage, which is giving workers more bargaining power
  • The record gains don’t outpace inflation, though, and data suggest that when accounting for inflation, private sector wages and salaries have fallen 3.3% over the last year
 DIG DEEPER 
Another factor pushing up salaries and wages is that people are switching jobs at faster rates, and job-switching is linked to bigger and more frequent bay pumps.

finger What do you think?


Today's Poll:
Do you prefer animated or real-life comedy TV shows?

Animated
Real-life


Today's Question:
How do you react to stories about the government potentially illicitly spying on you?


Reply to this email with your answers!

See yesterday's results below the Wrap!

popcorn Popcorn

Culture & Sports
  • No royal treatment: Netflix has dropped an animated series created by Meghan Markle and her Archewell Productions amid larger cutbacks
  • But not all bad Netflix news! Mila Kunis and Ashton Kutcher will join the the Netflix That '70s Show rebootThat '90s Show
  • Big boy: After the Ravens scooped him in the 4th round of the draft, Australia’s Daniel Faalele became the NFL's heaviest player (384lbs/174kg) 

Business 
  • Hater of Omaha: Warren Buffett said of bitcoin, "If you offered [all the bitcoin in the world] to me for $25 I wouldn’t take it"
  • Musk vs Bezos heats up: Amazon plans to challenge SpaceX's Starlink network with Project Kuiper. It aims to launch 3,236 satellites
  • Whole lotta money: Jeff Bezos lost $20B of his fortune in one day after Amazon's stock tanked on its dismal earnings report

Wildcard
  • The family of the Hotel Rwanda hero has filed a $400M lawsuit against Rwanda for luring him back home for abduction and torture
  • Not a Barbie world: Aqua's hit 1997 song "Barbie Girl" will not appear in the 2023 Barbie film starring Margot Robbie
  • An astrophysicist captured a sweet pic of Saturn, Mars, Venus, and Jupiter lined up behind the moon in the dawn sky over Rome
  • Suicide squad: The US is sending a shipment of "suicide drones" to Ukraine. The Jupiter Ghost detonates a warhead when it strikes

Roca Wrap

A Newsletter Exclusive

The last year hadn’t been easy for Andrew Fahie – the premier, or elected leader, of the British Virgin Islands (BVI). But on April 28, things appeared to be paying off.

After attending a conference in Miami, Fahie boarded a jet where he was shown several designer bags loaded with $700,000 cash. It was the first installment of many he was due to receive for a deal he had allegedly cut with a Mexican drug trafficker: Fahie would allow them to store their 3,000kg shipment of Colombian cocaine in the BVI until it was ready for export to the US. In exchange, he’d receive 12% of the profits. 

If the trial shipment was successful, it would be repeated once or twice a month moving forward. Fahie would make up to $7.8M per shipment. 

Except none of it was real: The drug trafficker was a US Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) informant, and the operation was a DEA sting. After inspecting the cash on the jet, US agents arrested Fahie. “Why am I getting arrested, I don’t have any money or drugs,” he said, according to court documents. 

Hours later, the head of the BVI government’s Port Authority was shown the same cash on the same plane. She was arrested as well. 

***

Fahie was born in the BVI in 1970. A high school math teacher known for playing the organ in church and opening government meetings with prayers, he was first elected to government in 1999. He was widely popular, and had a reputation for beating anyone he challenged in an election. In 2017, he became premier of the BVI.  

In January 2021, though, the UK launched an investigation into Fahie’s BVI government, alleging widespread corruption, poor governance, government complicity with drug trafficking, and more. The investigation had been underway since, with a report due in June. 

Throughout, Fahie had stated that the allegations were overblown. “There is no evidence…showing that the BVI is corrupt,” he said in November. He called the allegations “irresponsible” and “unsubstantiated,” while calling on the relevant UK government official to apologize.

As Fahie was making those statements, a US DEA informant posing as a member of a Mexican drug cartel was meeting in the BVI with drug traffickers linked to Hezbollah, a US-designated terrorist group. One of them claimed to “own” the director of BVI’s ports; another said he could schedule an introduction to Fahie’s head of security. 

That meeting set the stage for an increasingly elaborate sting, which eventually led to the DEA informant meeting with Fahie himself. According to court documents, in one meeting, Fahie used a calculator to see how much his 12% cut would make off a 3,000kg shipment: $7.8M. In another conversation, Fahie told the informant he “believed in witches and magic and how to read lies in people.”

The sting came to its climax on the jet in Miami last week. 

***

The UK and DEA said there was no link between the British investigation and the American one, but the UK took Fahie’s arrest as an opportunity to release its BVI report early. 

Governance in the BVI is “appalling,” the report concluded, and “almost everywhere the principles of good governance…are ignored.” It called for suspending the BVI’s elected government for up to 2 years, and placing the territory under direct British control.

Among the report's allegations were that $36.5M of pandemic funds for struggling families went to political allies, $88M of funds for infrastructure projects were misused, and many millions more were wasted through corruption – including a new wall at a high school that cost $917,000 because of corrupt contracts. 

Fahie, the head of BVI ports, and another BVI official are now in US jails awaiting hearings. The BVI remain as beautiful as ever, but they look like paradise no more.  

If you have thoughts, let us know at Max@RocaNews.com!
 
Future Wrap ideas or requests? Let us know!

wave Games


Can you remember the company's original (or previous) name? For example, Meta = Facebook.
  1. Alphabet
  2. WW
  3. World Wrestling Entertainment
  4. KFC
Find out the answer at the bottom of Roca Clubhouse.

wave Roca Clubhouse
Yesterday's Poll:

Which famous chef/food personality do you like better? 
Guy Fieri: 45.5%
Gordon Ramsay: 54.5%
 

Yesterday's Question:

Just 20 Questions! Check out Friday's newsletter for the responses. 
 
Games Answer(s):
1. Google (technically, BackRub originally) 2. Weight Watchers 3. World Wrestling Federation 4. Kentucky Fried Chicken

Spread the Wave!

Share The Current with friends, and win free swag! Some are secrets, some are awesome Roca gear...

Let's make this wave a tsunami, and share away!

Copy and send your referral link to others: https://sparklp.co/5b5757bc
PS - You've brought 0 friends to The Current so far.

Final Thoughts 


Thanks for reading the Current and we hope you all had better weekends than Andrew Fahie did. Time to attack the week!

- Max and Max
 
Link
Website
LinkedIn
Thanks for reading! 
As always, send thoughts and feedback to Max@Rocanews.com






This email was sent to you
why did I get this?    unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences
RocaNews · See more online at: · rocanews.com · For additional inquiries, contact info@rocanews.com 20005 · USA

Older messages

🌊 Not-So-Special K

Friday, April 29, 2022

Kellogg's, one of the world's largest cereal producers, is challenging anti-obesity food rules soon to take effect in the UK. The rules, meant to... April 29, 2022 We absolutely loved reading

🌊 She Was... How Old?!

Thursday, April 28, 2022

The confirmed world's oldest person, Kane Tanaka, died in Japan, aged 119. Born in 1903, Tanaka spent her entire life in the city of Fukuoka... April 28, 2022 3 notable April 28 tidbits from pop

🌊 Partial Brains Work

Wednesday, April 27, 2022

A new study in the journal Neuropsychologia suggests people can live normally without sections of the brain. The study researched a woman who is... April 27, 2022 100 years ago, the German candy

🌊 Price Is Not Right

Tuesday, April 26, 2022

A national survey found that 47% of US small businesses are planning to raise prices by 4%+. 40% are planning to raise prices by 10%+. The survey... April 26, 2022 Just like that, Elon Musk owns

🌊 Putin' It In Reverse

Monday, April 25, 2022

A Russian general said Russia's goal is to seize Ukraine's south and east. Russia originally wanted to overthrow the Ukrainian government... April 25, 2022 Happy Hug a Plumber Day. Yes,

Your Monday Briefing: Australia’s new prime minister

Sunday, May 22, 2022

Plus President Biden's trip to Asia and catastrophic floods in India and Bangladesh. View in browser|nytimes.com Continue reading the main story Morning Briefing, Asia Pacific Edition May 23, 2022

🧠 Let’s talk about maladaptive daydreaming

Sunday, May 22, 2022

Sit back, relax, and feel the feels. This Sunday doesn't have to be scary. ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌

Enemy Music

Sunday, May 22, 2022

On Sundays, Browser readers receive a special edition with puzzles, poems, books, charts, music and more – here's a little taste of this week's edition. ----------------------------------------

GeekWire's Most-Read Stories of the Week

Sunday, May 22, 2022

Catch up on the top tech stories from this past week. Here are the headlines that people have been reading on GeekWire. ADVERTISEMENT GeekWire SPONSOR MESSAGE: Did you miss the Pacific Northwest's

Lever Weekly: The Foxes Guarding The Henhouse

Sunday, May 22, 2022

The Democrats' proposal to tackle far-right violence by increasing funding for anti-terrorism agencies may only exacerbate the problem. Lever Weekly: The Foxes Guarding The Henhouse By Julia Rock –

☕ Island time

Sunday, May 22, 2022

Meet one of Peloton's biggest stars... Together with Manscaped May 22, 2022 | View Online | Sign Up | Shop Kate Dehler IN THIS ISSUE Tips for a first-time interviewer Tunde Oyeneyin says dream jobs

🤝Alternative mental health treatments

Sunday, May 22, 2022

Your 05/22/22 update on all things social work ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌

Weekender: Instagram's Testing a New Stories UI Which Could Have Big Implications for Your Content Strategy

Saturday, May 21, 2022

May​ 21,​ 2022 Sign up | Forward Adobe BROUGHT TO YOU BY — Adobe Seven Reasons ABM Is a Business Imperative Download our fact sheet to learn seven key benefits of account-based marketing and why it has

Bearish On Bitcoin | Whales Eat Crypto Crow

Saturday, May 21, 2022

Also: Crypto's Great Reset: How Digital Asset Investors Will Recover From The Market's $1 Trillion Meltdown Also: Crypto's Great Reset: How Digital Asset Investors Will Recover From The

How startups can survive turbulent times | Boeing’s uncrewed capsule links up with space station

Saturday, May 21, 2022

Tech companies rescind job offers amid economic uncertainty | Seattle teens win at international science fair ADVERTISEMENT GeekWire SPONSOR MESSAGE: Did you miss the Pacific Northwest's annual