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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, October 16, 2014

Two Haitian Men Sentenced To 57 Months In Prison For Alien Smuggling Conspiracy That Killed Eight

St. Thomas, USVI – On Thursday, October 16, 2014, District Court Judge Curtis V. Gomez sentenced both Dieuseul Mompremier, 43, also known as “Jomei,” and Lamorthe Delva, 46, to 57 months imprisonment, five years supervised release and a $100 special assessment for their roles 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 and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Special Agent in Charge Angel Melendez announced. Edourre, who was arrested and prosecuted in the British Virgin Islands (BVI) for manslaughter, is currently serving a 10-year sentence. Mompremier and Delva, who have been incarcerated since their arrests on April 11, 2014, were remanded to the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service to begin serving their sentences.

Delva and Mompremier each pleaded guilty to Count One of an indictment charging them with alien smuggling. Delva pleaded guilty on May 23, 2014, and Mompremier pleaded guilty on June 19, 2014. According to court records, in December 2010, Mompremier, Delva, 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, BVI, resulting in the death of at least eight individuals, including four children.

United States Attorney Sharpe commended the investigative work of ICE, HSI, and Assistant U.S. Attorney Kim L. Chisholm, who prosecuted this case.

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Updated June 22, 2015