By DENISE MAYCOCK
Tribune Freeport Reporter
TWENTY-two illegal immigrants were taken into custody by immigration officials in separate arrests on Grand Bahama, officials in Freeport have reported.
The latest arrest occurred on Monday night when officers discovered 11 undocumented Haitians in Freeport.
Immigration officer Napthali Cooper reported that 10 Haitian men and one woman, along with an infant, were taken into custody. During investigations, Mr Cooper said it was discovered that some of the Haitians had arrived in The Bahamas illegally by boat from Haiti, while others had refused to leave after their permits had been denied.
Mr Cooper said they were processed in Freeport on Monday and flown yesterday to New Providence, where they were put on an 11am charter flight with 140 other Haitians, for repatriation to Haiti.
Mr Cooper also reported that 11 immigrants were apprehended on March 16, including two Brazilians, one Jamaican and eight Haitians.
He said that two Brazilian men were arrested in West End. It was discovered that the men had been legally admitted, but had overstayed their time in the country.
In a separate matter, a Jamaican woman who had overstayed her visitor’s status by four weeks was taken into custody. Seven Haitian men and one woman were also taken into custody following routine patrols in Freeport and Eight Mile Rock.
Mr Cooper reported that none of the Haitians possessed any documents regarding their legal status in The Bahamas. “They had entered The Bahamas illegally by boat from Haiti and remained in the country without legal status,” he said.