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Ship Captain May Be Charged

By Rashad Rolle

Tribune Staff Reporter

rrolle@tribunemedia.net

A BAHAMIAN may soon face smuggling charges in the United States after the ship he allegedly captained capsized off the coast of Miami, resulting in the death of four of the 15 people on board.

The 25-foot motor-boat Naaman Davis allegedly navigated capsized after leaving Bimini.

According to an affidavit signed by a US law enforcement agent, Davis attempted to unlawfully enter the US despite being physically removed from the country in December last year.

The small boat left Bimini with 15 people from the Bahamas, Haiti and Jamaica. None of the persons on board was permitted to enter the US.

The US Coast Guard responded to reports of the capsized vessel around 1 am last Thursday when they found the 11 survivors.

The four women who died were all of Haitian descent.

Of the 11 survivors, federal authorities said almost all of them had previously been deported from the US, most of them after being convicted of serious crimes.

Six persons have been arrested while five others remain in US custody. Those in custody, including four Haitians and one unidentified Bahamian, are being kept at Broward Transitional Centre in Pompano Beach, Florida.

A criminal complaint into the matter revealed that according to one of the migrants, before the arrival on shore, crewman George Lewis of Jamaica had told the migrants to tell the US Coast Guard “that the vessel captain had swum away and never came back.”

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