On Thursday, June 25th at approximately 3:30 pm, Police Marine Unit Received a call from a concerned member of the community regarding a white sailing vessel that allegedly dropped off persons with backpacks at Prickly Pear Island. The Joint Task Force made up of RVIPF, Immigration and Customs Officers, responded and intercepted a white sailing vessel on the North Western side of the island heading North away from the island.

2 Officers stayed on the sailing vessel to conduct inquiries while the remainder proceeded to search Prickly Pear Island, where they found 5 males and 1 female taking refuge in a small building. An additional search was conducted the following day which uncovered 4 more persons, 2 on the beach front of the island and 2 on Leverick Bay, Virgin Gorda bringing the total of Illegal Immigrants to 10 persons.

As a result of inquiries, the lone occupant of the sailing vessel, Crawford Sabaroche, a 53-year-old Dominican native residing in St. Maarten was arrested and charged for Being Engaged in Illegal Smuggling and Illegal Entry. He is currently being held at Paradise Suites pending his appearance at The Magistrate’s Court.

The remaining immigrants are also being held at Paradise Suites pending deportation.