BVI Brothers Sentenced In US For Smuggling Illegal Aliens

BVI Platinum News | 2 Opinions
Published: August 12, 2017 11:24 am AST
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Two brothers, originally from the British Virgin Islands, were ordered to serve one year in prison, after they pleaded guilty to smuggling six illegal aliens from the Dominican Republic into the United States.

The brothers, King Leonard, 24, and Michael Leonard, 21, appeared before US Federal Court on Tuesday, August 8, where they were officially sentenced by U.S. District Court Judge, Curtis Gomez.

The men were also sentenced to serve three years of supervised release, pay a $100 special assessment, and perform 350 hours of community service.

According to the allegation, M/V Sole Mio, a vessel being captained by the men on November 11, was intercepted by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agents in the narrows between St. Thomas and St. John.

At the time, the Sole Mio was allegedly operating without navigational lights and the two brothers failed to respond when CBP agents contacted them on the vessel.

The men allegedly attempted to outrun the US agents, but when that failed, they subsequently jumped into the ocean in further attempts to avoid being captured.

The agents were able to retrieve them from the water.

When CBP agents boarded the Sole Mio, they found five men and one woman on board.

Michael told prosecutors that he and his brother had been paid $100 each to take the six people to Jost Van Dyke in the British Virgin Islands.

The case was further investigated by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations with the assistance of U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP).
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