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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Southern District of Florida

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, June 21, 2018

Three Individuals Convicted and Sentenced to Prison for Alien Smuggling

Boat Captain Assaulted During Smuggling Venture

Benjamin G. Greenberg, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida and Mark Selby, Special Agent in Charge, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations (ICE-HSI), Miami Field Office, announce the conviction and sentencing of three individuals who injured a man while smuggling aliens by sea.  

According to the court docket, in September of 2016, Giorgi Abrakhamia, 37, Giorgi Kokuashvili, 41, and Mikheil Gogiashvili, 30, all from the Republic of Georgia, smuggled two Brazilian nationals by boat into South Florida from Freeport, Bahamas.  During the course of the alien smuggling venture, Abrakhamia and Kokuashvili stabbed a Bahamian charter boat captain with a knife and pushed him overboard in the Straits of Florida before comandeering his vessel to transport the aliens. The captain survived the attack. 

On February 21, 2018, Kokuashvili pled guilty to alien smuggling.  On March 27, 2018, Abrakhamia and Gogiashvili also pled guilty to alien smuggling.  On June 20, 2018, U.S. District Judge Kennetth A. Marra sentenced Abrakhamia and Kokuashvili to 78 months in prison, and Gogiashvili to 36 months in prison (Case No. 17-CR-80112).

Mr. Greenberg commended the investigative efforts of ICE-HSI in this matter.  Mr. Greenberg also thanked the Royal Bahamiam Police Force for their assistance.  This case was prosecuted by Special Assistant United States Attorneys Emily Rose and Philip Jones and United States Attorney Adrienne Rabinowitz.

Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Southern District of Florida at www.flsd.uscourts.gov or on http://pacer.flsd.uscourts.gov.

Updated June 21, 2018