NASSAU, BAHAMAS — Royal Bahamas Defence Force officers arrested more than 90 Haitian migrants for illegally entering the country on Tuesday night, authorities said yesterday.
According to the Royal Bahamas Defence Force, an Operations Turks and Caicos (OPBAT) helicopter on routine patrol detected a vessel off the south eastern end of Inagua.
Officers responded and found 10 Haitians on board the 30-foot wooden low-profile vessel.
Authorities combed the coastline and nearby bushes and arrested over 80 suspected Haitian migrants.
In a statement, the RBDF said: “These individuals are currently being removed from the remote area in a joint effort by the Royal Bahamas Defence and Police Forces and transferred to the United States Guard.”
The RBDF said the migrants will be taken to Matthew Town, Inagua, where they are expected to be received by immigration officials for further processing.
This is the second reported illegal landing this month.
Fifty-six Haitian migrants were arrested near Deadman’s Cay, Long Island on Saturday.
The group included 50 men and six women.
They were charged and convicted in a magistrate’s court this week for illegal landing, with 10 repeat offenders remanded to the Department of Correctional Services for one year in addition to a $3,000 fine.
In June, 177 Haitians were arrested around 30 miles south of Inagua on a motorized wooden vessel.
Yesterday, the defense force said it remains vigilant in defending the “territorial integrity of the Commonwealth of The Bahamas”.