Local law enforcement officers have detained 10 illegal immigrants who were reportedly smuggled into the territory last Thursday, June 25.
The Royal Virgin Islands Police Force said in a media Sunday evening that the majority of the immigrants — five males and one female — were found on the outer island of Prickly Pear taking refuge in a small building.
“An additional search was conducted the following day which uncovered four more persons — two on the beachfront of the island and two on Leverick Bay, Virgin Gorda,” the RVIPF said.
The illegal immigrants were discovered after police received a call from “a concerned member of the community” regarding a white sailing vessel that allegedly dropped off persons with backpacks at Prickly Pear Island.
Alleged smuggler identified
The RVIPF said a joint task force comprising police as well as Customs and Immigration Officers responded and intercepted a white sailing vessel heading away from the island in a northerly direction.
“As a result of inquiries, the lone occupant of the sailing vessel, Crawford Sabaroch — a 53-year-old native of Dominica residing in St Maarten — was arrested and charged for Being Engaged in Illegal Smuggling and Illegal Entry,” the RVIPF reported.
Police said Sabaroche is being held under quarantine at Paradise Suites pending an appearance at the Magistrate’s Court.
The remaining immigrants are also being held at Paradise Suites pending deportation, the police stated.
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