According to Napthali Cooper, immigration officer on Tuesday at about 4:00 am, a high-speed vessel “cigarette” with 19 Haitian nationals and two Bahamians on board was intercepted by the United States Coast Guard (USCG) at the entrance of Lake Worth, Florida.
Haitian nationals (10 men and 9 women including three minor girls) said they left Abaco during the evening of Sunday, September 10th.
Cooper informed that the 19 Haitian migrants were processed by officials from the USCG and placed aboard the USCG Cutter Bernard Webber for transport to Freeport.
The two Bahamians suspected traffickers were arrested by US authorities and should be charged in courts of Florida with 19 counts of human trafficking.
Wednesday at about 7h30 pm the Haitians were led to Lucayan Harbour aboard the USCG Cutter Bernard Webber and handed over to immigration officials in the Bahamas.
The Ministry of Local Immigration noted that the 19 Haitian immigrants said they all lived in Abaco and went to the US to live. Haitian reported paying two Bahamians to come to United States.
From Lucayan Harbour the migrants were taken to immigration headquarters in Freeport, where they wereprocessed overnight by immigration officials and police. Thursday they were led aboard the Western Air to the capital where “migrants will then be detained at the Detention Center until repatriated to Haiti,” said Cooper.