Monday 6 July, 2020

Airport arrests trigger probe into human trafficking ring in Jamaica

The arrests of two Albanian students at the Norman Manley International Airport (NMIA) in Kingston recently, for travelling with stolen passports, has resulted in an investigation into a suspected human smuggling ring operating in Jamaica.

The foreign students were found in possession of stolen United States passports.

 They were preparing to board a flight to Canada two Sundays ago when they were arrested after discrepancies with their passports were detected.

 It was discovered that they were using false names.

 The two, 25-year-old Limos Selimi and 21-year-old Arjana Hortay, appeared in the St Andrew Parish Court last Thursday, where they pleaded guilty to uttering forged documents and forgery.

 They were each subsequently fined $200,000 or six months in prison, and ordered to be deported by Parish Judge, Vaughn Smith.

In court, it was revealed that the two Albanians had arrived in Jamaica on legitimate Albanian passports last month, and were granted stay in the country until May.

But investigations revealed that they paid US$15,000 in Jamaica for the US passports which had been stolen in that country and ended up in Jamaica.

Indications are the US law enforcement has been called upon to help to determine whether an international human smuggling ring is being operated in Jamaica.

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