BVI News

Albanians fined! BVI was not their final destination, court hears

From left: Accused Albanian duo Valdet Tafhasaj, 37, and 18-year-old, Fatlind Cenaj.

Albania nationals – Valdet Tafhasaj and Fatlind Cenaj – have been each fined $1,000 for illegal entry into the British Virgin Islands.

Tafhasaj, a 37-year-old construction worker, and 18-year-old student Cenaj were fined after pleading guilty when they appeared before the Magistrate’ Court on Friday.

The fines are to be paid by February 14, 2020. If the Albanian offenders fail to pay, they will spend 60 days at Her Majesty’s Prison.

Magistrate Ayana Baptiste DaBreo ordered that the offenders remain on remand at the adult penitentiary until the fines are paid.

Just passing through

Ahead of their sentencing, the Albanian offenders’ attorney Leroy Jones told the court that his clients were just in-transit through the BVI and urged the court to temper justice with mercy.

“The BVI was not their intended and final destination They were just passing through,” Jones told the court, adding that his clients were remorseful. 

The men, through an interpreter, said their final destination was the United States.

What the court heard happened

The court heard that the duo along with Venezuelan national Rafael Josue Torres Guerrero — who was fined $1,000 for entering the British Virgin Islands illegally on Thursday – arrived into the territory via boat at Trellis Bay.

The court heard that while on mobile patrol on February 3, members of the Royal Virgin Islands Police Force spotted a go-fast boat entering the Beef Island-based harbour.

The boat was void of light, and three persons were spotted onboard.

The trio later disembarked and entered two separate vehicles in the parking lot and left shortly after that.

The police followed the moving vehicles and intercepted them at Lambert in East End.

They were later transported to the Road Town Police Station where police discovered that they had no entry stamp permitting them legally into the Territory.

They were arrested on suspicion of illegal entry and brought before the court.

Prior to their appearance on Friday, the Albanians were made to appear on two previous occasions. But their matter failed to progress on those occasions because the court had trouble sourcing and Albanian interpreter.

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11 Comments

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  1. ken says:

    They also need to arrest all of those people who assisted and grab the boat…..and the captain…

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  2. Tracy says:

    Who owns the boat? Who owns the cars? Who drove them by boat and car? Why didn’t the boat owner clear customs? Where did they come from? Were drugs involved? Were the police paid off not to investigate the accomplices?

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    • Hmmm says:

      The Captain could have said that he picked them up from Virgin Gorda or Scrub Island and was giving them a ride to their guest house. It does not seem like the Albanians rat on the captain or were they picked up on radar as coming from outside of the BVI so you have no evidence. Government is been careful. They previously had to payout almost one million dollars for holding the man from West End boat. I think our taxpaying dollars should go towards education and not paying lawsuits. These type of activities will never end eventhough we wish they would.

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      • Hmm says:

        “being”…my error

        • DT says:

          Of course, but we need the full story including how the Albinos and the Veni arrived. How did they get in? How long were they here? Why didn’t we lock em up until they talked? Were there drugs involved?
          Did the police investigate the relatives of the owners of the boat and the cars? Are there more illegals that they may be accidentally transporting around the islands?

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      • PROBLEMS says:

        There is enough evidence to seize the boat. As if they were on Scrub island as you state then he should have notified the authorities. And the cars were waiting for them so they should also be confiscated

    • PROBLEMS says:

      The boat and the cars needed to be confiscated and who ever the captain of the boat is and the drivers of the cars need to be in lock up whether native or foreigners.

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  3. Democracy says:

    Hope they pay the $10 in-transit fee !

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  4. 2 vehicles says:

    how them get keys?

    • soo says:

      Obviously they were picked up by chauffeurs in the two vehicles because they would not have known any route on Tortola. Most likely they were being transported to the next get away point (if their story is true).

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