Sat | Nov 17, 2018

Seven drug traffickers, lottery scammers extradited to US since start of 2018

Published:Wednesday | March 21, 2018 | 12:00 AMPaul Clarke/Gleaner Writer
From left: FBI Special Agent Frank Gasper, Assistant United States Attorney Claire Hochhalter, Detective Woman Corporal Nashema Newell, Assistant United States Attorney James Thomas, and United States Marshal Dan Orr.

Seven wanted persons have been apprehended and extradited from Jamaica to the United States (US) since the start of the year. These individuals are wanted in the US for various offences, including lottery scamming, assault, drug trafficking and sexual crimes.

The extraditions are the collaborative efforts of the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) and the United States government through the Department of Justice, which have worked to strengthen their partnership. Three of the seven who were extradited were charged with lottery scam-related charges.

Meanwhile, the JCF's Counter-Terrorism and Organised Crime Branch (C-TOC) Fugitive Apprehension Team was recognised by the US attorney for the District of North Dakota at a ceremony in Bismarck, North Dakota, on March 15. Detective Woman Corporal Nashema Newell received the awards on behalf of her Jamaican law-enforcement colleagues. This augurs well for the continued relationship between the two countries, according to C-TOC head, Assistant Commissioner of Police Fitz Bailey.

"We continue having a strong relationship with our counterparts in the US, and this acknowledgement, by awarding us, shows that we are appreciated. Our good works are being recognised and the collaboration is certain," Bailey said.

"We have extradited a number of people over the years and, as a small nation, we are proud that our local police personnel are reaping the benefit of hard work and a commitment to law and order in Jamaica," said Bailey.

The Fugitive Apprehension Team was responsible for the apprehension of 14 defendants who were involved in transnational organised crime associated with lottery scamming. They were ultimately extradited to stand trial in the United States.

paul.clarke@gleanerjm.com