KINGSTON, Jamaica – The four Haitian fishermen who were rescued in Portland waters in late November are now safely back in their country, after a confusing expedition.
According to the Jamaica Observer, The men were rescued at St Margaret’s Bay in the vicinity of the Rio Grande bridge in Portland on November 27, after their disabled vessel was spotted by Jamaican fisherfolk who assisted them to shore.
They were subsequently handed over to the Portland police and then processed by the health department and immigration representatives.
Head of the Portland police Superintendent Duane Wellington told the Jamaica Observer that the men, when they appeared before the Portland Parish Court on December 6, had the charges of illegal entry against them withdrawn and they were handed over to authorities from the Passport Immigration and Citizenship Agency (PICA) in Kingston, based on new information.
PICA head Andrew Wynter said information from the men’s homeland significantly impacted their status and saved them from being sent back to Haiti as deportees. Continue reading
“We put them on a flight and they are now back in Haiti. Two left on the 27th of December and two left on the 29th,” Wynter told the Observer.
Initially, authorities had charged the men with illegal entry and had intended to deport them following the court proceedings.
“Because they were considered rescued at sea, you wouldn’t deport those persons. It wouldn’t be considered a deportation under the circumstances,” Wynter explained.