Though Senior Magistrate Tamia Richards has found Cayma Nibbs guilty of illegal entry and failure to declare more than $30,000 to Customs, that money will not be forfeited to the State.
“Forfeiture is clearly not on the table,” the senior magistrate said after she heard arguments from the prosecution.
Prosecuting attorney Leslie-Ann Faulkner yesterday told the senior magistrate that, under law, the court can order the forfeiture of money found to be the proceeds of criminal conduct.
No evidence was presented during Nibbs’ trial that the money in question was actually acquired through criminal activity.
Nibbs will be sentenced on Friday, July 21.
Reports are that police officers were in the Frenchman’s Cay area of Tortola doing undercover surveillance on Nibbs around 10pm on July 23, 2014.
Nibbs was seen boarding an inflatable dinghy after he arrived at the location on a scooter.
Police claimed that they observed while he sailed the dinghy in the direction of Soper’s Hole, and then proceeded westerly towards St Thomas in the US Virgin Islands.
Nibbs returned to the area hours later, boarded the aforementioned scooter, and drove away. The cops intercepted him and asked if he had anything to declare, but he reportedly said no.
The officers searched a backpack the offender was carrying, and a quantity of United States currency was found.
When police asked Nibbs how much money was in the bag, he reportedly told them about $42,000. Asked where he was coming from, Nibbs said he was on a sailing trip to St Thomas, but changed his mind and returned to the Frenchman’s Cay area.
He further told the cops that the money he had was to be used to purchase four scooters. Nibbs was taken to the police station and later charged for failing to declare funds amounting to $32,980.
Police detained the money under the Proceeds of Crime Act.
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