Trouble in FIJI Water Paradise?

North of Sunset in Beverly Hills is a long way from the island of Fiji, but the two are connected in more than the usual ways this afternoon. The former is the location of one of the homes of L.A. billionaires Stewart Resnick and Lynda Rae Resnick (pictured). The latter is where a political shoving match involving their FIJI Water empire has apparently escalated.

According to a dispatch from New Zealand, the reason Fiji’s interim Defense Minister Epeli Ganilau resigned via email today, November 17th, is because he was being asked to allow the country’s military to take over FIJI Water and deport company CEO David Roth. We’re not kidding.

The report goes on to state:

Two years ago, the military government tried to put a 20-cent-per-liter royalty on FIJI Water, but yielded to pressure from the company when they said they would pull out if taxed… Rumors have grown that the military government wants to take over FIJI Water and force it into local ownership, as it did with the once Rupert Murdoch-owned Fiji Times.

A big part of the FIJI Water mantra is that its product is “untouched by man” at the production process end. Whether or not that continues to extend to Fiji’s men in power remains to be determined.