Crime

Guilty Plea from Chinese National for Unlawful U.S. Entry via Suriname and St. Thomas

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ST. THOMAS – A Chinese national, Guangsong Chen, has entered a guilty plea in the District Court regarding his illegal entry into the United States, as disclosed by U.S. Attorney Delia L. Smith. The proceedings were held before U.S. Magistrate Judge Ruth Miller.

The court documents unveiled that on August 3, 2023, Chen, while on his way to board a flight to the mainland from the Cyril E. King airport in St. Thomas, was scrutinized by officers from the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP). The inspection divulged Chen’s initial journey from China to Suriname. Following this, on July 26, 2023, he illegally sailed into St. Thomas by boat, having compensated smugglers with $7,500 for his voyage.

There are no legal documents to validate Chen’s entry into the United States. Moreover, there’s no evidence showing that he had either sought or received prior authorization to enter or reside in the country, as per the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

In light of his guilty plea, Chen was facing a possible sentence of up to six months in confinement. Nonetheless, he was credited with time already served.

The investigation of this case was spearheaded by the United States Customs and Border Protection. Assistant U.S. Attorney Melissa P. Ortiz represented the U.S. government in the prosecution of this case.

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