#Providenciales, October 11, 2019 – Turks and Caicos – A joint effort between the United States Coast Guard and the Marine Branch of the Royal Turks and Caicos Islands Police Force resulted in the successful apprehension of 86 illegal immigrants on a vessel in Turks and Caicos Islands waters on October 6th, 2019.
The vessel was first spotted by the US Coast Guard and monitored until it was intercepted by the Police Marine branch. Immigration Enforcement Officers met the illegal vessel at the South Dock Port, where the eighty-six (86) immigrants (seventy-seven (77) males; six (6) females and three (3) male minors) were searched, escorted to the detention centre, processed, detained and later repatriated.
The Turks and Caicos Islands Government would like to express its gratitude and appreciation to the US Coast Guard for its assistance in intercepting this illegal vessel and also to thank the hardworking officers of the Marine Branch and the Immigration Department for going above and beyond the call of duty during this operation.
The Minister also commended the efforts of the team and noted that the Ministry continues to collaborate with other government agency and our international partners to combat illegal migration. He went on to say, “we will continue to work on the formulation on partnerships with the Bahamas and the US for coordinated response to this very serious issue.”
The Enforcement agencies of the Turks and Caicos Islands are again asking anyone with information concerning planned and landed arrival of other vessels to contact the Police anonymously on 911 or Crime Stoppers anonymously on 1-800-8477.
The public is also reminded that it is an offence to harbour illegal persons and that persons found guilty engaging in such activities are liable to a fine of US$20,000 or a term of imprisonment of four years, or both in accordance with Section 99 of the Immigration Ordinance 2015.
Tips can also be submitted anonymously in English, French or Spanish on either www.crimestoppers.tc or on Facebook as a fan of Crime Stoppers Turks & Caicos. Crime Stoppers tips are received in the USA.