Sun | Jul 23, 2017

Jamaicans among Haitian migrants intercepted by US Coast Guard near Florida

Published:Sunday | June 28, 2015 | 6:51 AM

MIAMI, CMC – Jamaicans were said to be among a group of Haitian migrants on a boat that was intercepted by the United States (US) Coast Guard near Palm Beach Gardens, Florida yesterday.

On Saturday, the US coast guard said a Customs and Border Protection team interdicted a 28-foot non-compliant vessel suspected of migrant smuggling and disabled the vessel’s engines and detained a suspected smuggler.

Aboard the vessel were said to be nationals from Jamaica, the Dominican Republic and Haiti.

The US coast guard said the unidentified suspected smugglers, the Jamaican and Dominicans, were transferred ashore for further investigation.

“This deliberate attempt to smuggle illegal migrants into south Florida unnecessarily put lives at great risk, including those of young children,” said Timothy Cronin of the US coast guard.

“The coast guard, along with our interagency partners will continue to protect and secure our maritime border,” he added. “We will also seek to prosecute smugglers, who have no regard for safety of life at sea, to the fullest extent of the law and promptly return illegal migrants to their respective county of origin.”

Since October 1, the US Coast Guard 7th District estimates that 2,245 Haitians; 2,806 Cubans and 469 Dominicans have attempted to illegally migrate via the sea.

These numbers represent the total amount of at-sea interdictions, landings and disruptions in the Florida Straits, the Caribbean and Atlantic, the US coast guard said.