ALIEN SMUGGLER AND FIVE MIGRANTS SENTENCED IN FAILED PALM BEACH SMUGGLING VENTURE
Wifredo A. Ferrer, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, Anthony V. Mangione, Special Agent in Charge, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Homeland Security Investigations, Miami Field Office, and Randy Donnelson, Director of Air Operations, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Air and Marine Branch, announce the sentencings of defendants Kelsey James McQueen, 24, of the Bahamas, Juan Carlos Paredes-Rodriguez, 44,of the Dominican Republic, Oneil Black, 32, Andrew Fitzgerald Saint Aubyn Brissett, 45, Sheldon Lewis, 35, and Carolyn Denise Waddles, 36, all of Jamaica. These defendants were sentenced in connection with the April 2010, failed migrant smuggling venture, which resulted in the interdiction of the vessel Mary Carla.
According to documents filed with the court, on April 28, 2010, CBP patrol vessels pursued the 41-foot sportfish vessel Mary Carla, which was registered in the State of Florida and had departed from the Grand Bahamas en route to the West Palm Beach area. This pursuit ended when Marine Interdiction Agents boarded the vessel and brought it to a stop. A total of fourteen (14) migrants were on board the boat, including Juan Carlos Paredes-Rodriguez, Oneil Black, Andrew Fitzgerald Saint Aubyn Brissett, Sheldon Lewis, and Carolyn Denise Waddles. Defendant Kelsey James McQueen was the boat captain. On April 29, ICE special agents arrested the defendants on federal criminal charges.
The defendants were subsequently indicted and pled guilty. Defendant McQueen pled guilty to alien smuggling, attempting reentry after deportation, and failure to heave. Defendants Paredes-Rodriguez, Black, Brissett, Lewis and Waddles pled guilty to attempting to illegally reentering the United States after deportation.
The defendants were sentenced as follows. On October 1, 2010, defendant McQueen was sentenced to a total of 84 months in jail. Defendant Paredes-Rodriguez was sentenced to 36 months in prison, Black was sentenced to 18 months in prison, and Brissett was sentenced to 36 months in prison. On October 8, 2010, defendant Lewis was sentenced to eight months in prison for illegal re-entry after deportation of an alien convicted of a felony. Lastly, on October 29, 2010, defendant Waddles was sentenced to 24 months in prison.
Mr. Ferrer commended the cooperation and investigative efforts of ICE's Homeland Security Investigations in West Palm Beach, CBP's Office of Air and Marine and Field Operations, and the U.S. Coast Guard. The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney William T. Zloch.
A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney's Office for the Southern District of Florida at http://www.usdoj.gov/usao/fls. Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Southern District of Florida at http://www.flsd.uscourts.gov or on http://pacer.flsd.uscourts.gov.