7 Haitian migrants arraigned and convicted in Grand Bahama

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On 13th January, 2021, six (6) adult Haitian males and one (1) adult Haitian female appeared before Magistrate Debbie Ferguson to answer to the charge of Illegal Landing, contrary to Section 19 (1) of the Immigration Act. The group was apprehended onboard a motor vessel by Immigration Officials on Sunday, 10th January, 2021 in the Tynes Bay, Grand Bahama area. The charge was read to the defendants with the assistance of an independent translator. Each defendant, through the translator verbally stated
to the Court that the charge was understood as read. Upon pleading guilty, they were all ordered deported as soon as practicable.

Additionally, one (1) adult Bahamian male was charged with Harboring the migrants; however, he plead not guilty to the charge and was ordered remanded to The Bahamas Department of Corrections until the 8th March, 2021. His subsequent request for bail was denied as this was his second appearance before the sitting Magistrate for a similar offense. Magistrate Ferguson further advised the defendant that he could seek bail in the Supreme Court.

The public is reminded that the Department is committed to executing the mandates of our agency by effectively coordinating efforts with other Law Enforcement agencies to ensure compliance with the Statute Laws of our Country. We further wish to remind members of the public that it is a criminal offence punishable by law to harbor illegal migrants in the Commonwealth of The Bahamas.

For further information, you may visit our website at http://www.immigration.gov.bs or call our hotline anonymously at 1-242-502-0574.

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