Thu | Dec 7, 2023

Jamaicans among Caribbean nationals apprehended in US immigration sweep

Published:Sunday | March 26, 2023 | 9:56 AM


The United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) agency says officers from its Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) Philadelphia apprehended several Caribbean nationals among 21 noncitizens identified as having been convicted of felony rape, sexual abuse, sexual exploitation, unlawful possession or use of a firearm, drug distribution or trafficking, or driving under the influence.

On Friday, ICE said the nationals were released from incarceration on parole or placed on probation into communities under supervision during a nationwide enforcement effort between March 4 and March 13.

“Working behind the scenes and out of the spotlight, ERO officers continually work to identify and arrest noncitizens who violate American laws,” said ERO Philadelphia Field Office Director Cammilla Wamsley. “Congratulations to all of the officers who took part in this operation, and thank you for your vigilance, dedication and hard work.”

ICE said those arrested include a 28-year-old citizen of Haiti residing in Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania, who was convicted in April 2022 of misdemeanour indecent assault on a person less than 16 years of age.

In addition, ICE said a 24-year-old citizen of Jamaica residing in Chester, Pennsylvania, was apprehended. He was convicted in March 2022 of felony criminal possession of a firearm.

ICE said ERO Newark, New Jersey also arrested a 40-year-old citizen of Trinidad and Tobago, residing in Teaneck, New Jersey.

He was convicted by the US District Court in the Southern District of New York of felony conspiracy to distribute controlled substances and felony narcotics — sell/distribute/dispense in November 2022.

“Community safety remains our ultimate priority as the arrests of these dangerous criminals demonstrate,” said ERO Newark Field Office Director John Tsoukaris. “Our officers showed their usual courage and professionalism as they carried out these arrests of these individuals, who were targeted based on the seriousness of their criminal offences.”

In New York City, ICE said two Jamaican nationals were arrested among 27 criminal noncitizens during the nationwide operation.

ICE said the offences included felony rape, sex abuse and criminal in possession of a firearm.

Among the arrestees was a 26-year-old citizen of Jamaica residing in Queens, New York, who was convicted in November 2022 by the Kings County Supreme Court in Brooklyn, New York, of felony sex abuse in the first degree. ICE said the victim was under 13.

Another Jamaican, a 27-year-old national living in Brooklyn, was also arrested, ICE said.

The immigration agency said he was convicted by the Supreme Court of the State of New York, Kings County, of felony criminal possession of a firearm, in July 2022.

“ERO New York City deportation officers are committed to enforcing our nation’s immigration laws against violent criminals, sex offenders and other noncitizens who pose a threat to public safety,” said ERO New York City Field Office Director Kenneth Genalo.

“The professionalism and dedication of our officers on this operation should be commended. Their tireless dedication to community safety protects New York residents from those who seek to do harm.”

In the fiscal year 2022, ICE said ERO arrested 46,396 noncitizens with criminal histories.

ICE said this group had 198,498 associated charges and convictions, including 21,531 assault offences; 8,164 sex and sexual assault offences; 5,554 weapons offences; 1,501 homicide-related offences; and 1,114 kidnapping offences.

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