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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Virgin Islands

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Second Haitian Man Pleads Guilty To Alien Smuggling Conspiracy That Killed 8

St. Thomas, USVI – Dieuseul Mompremier, 44, also known as “Jomei,” a Haitian national living in St. Thomas, pleaded guilty today in federal district court for his role in a conspiracy to smuggle illegal aliens into the United States, which resulted in the death of eight individuals, United States Attorney Ronald W. Sharpe announced. Mompremier, who has been incarcerated since his arrest on April 11, 2014, was remanded to the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service pending his sentencing, scheduled for September 25, 2014 before District Judge Curtis V. Gomez.

According to court records, in December 2010, Mompremier, Lamorthe Delva, 46, and Roro Edourre, 46, conspired with each other and additional co-conspirators to smuggle illegal aliens from St. Maarten, Netherlands Antilles, to St. John, U.S. Virgin Islands. On December 5, 2010, Edourre was the captain on the vessel “Jesus La,” with approximately 33 passengers, most of them Haitian nationals, including men, women and children, when the vessel traveled from St. Maarten, Netherlands Antilles, to the U.S. Virgin Islands. While Edourre was transporting the illegal aliens on the vessel, Mompremier and Delva waited in the U.S. Virgin Islands to pick up and transport the aliens upon their arrival in St. John. The U.S. Coast Guard spotted the vessel carrying Edourre and his passengers, and attempted to intercept it. However, Edourre attempted to evade the Coast Guard. While attempting to evade the Coast Guard, the “Jesus La” ran aground and sank near Tortola, resulting in the death of at least eight individuals, including four children.

Mompremier faces a maximum penalty of life in prison and a $250,000 fine. Delva pleaded guilty for his role in the conspiracy on May 23, 2014, and is awaiting sentencing, Edourre, who was arrested and prosecuted in the British Virgin Islands for manslaughter, is currently serving a 10-year sentence.

United States Attorney Sharpe commended the investigative work of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Homeland Security Investigations, and Assistant U.S. Attorney Kim L. Chisholm, who is prosecuting this case.

Updated June 22, 2015