Barbados ex-minister to spend two years in US prison, Mottley says it’s a ‘lesson for all’

A former government minister in Barbados was found guilty of two counts of money laundering and one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering in a US court.

55-year-old Donville Inniss was on Tuesday (April 27) sentenced to two years imprisonment for his role in a scheme in which he laundered bribes paid to him by a Barbadian insurance company.

The Eastern District Court of New York found that Inniss took the bribes while in his role as Minister of Commerce from 2015 to 2016.

According to the evidence presented in court, Inniss laundered approximately $36,000 that he received from executives of the Insurance Corporation of Barbados (ICBL).

The court heard that Inniss, in exchange for the bribes, used his position as a minister to enable ICBL to obtain two insurance contracts from the Barbados Government to insure over $100 million worth of government property.

The court further heard that Innis hid the payments made to him by the ICBL by having the money sent to a New York dental company. 

The funds were later deposited into his bank account through a series of transfers.

Following Inniss’ sentencing, Prime Minister of Barbados, Mia Mottley, released a statement noting that the outcome of the court proceedings should serve as a “lesson for us all”.

Mottley noted that it was the duty of elected officials to serve and act in the interests of the population, and not self.

 Inniss has until July 29 to surrender to federal prison authorities