Runaway Cubans jailed for three months

| 22/02/2016 | 10 Comments

Cayman News Service

(CNS): Two Cuban migrants who landed in Grand Cayman illegally in the Beach Bay area were sentenced to three months in jail on Friday after being on the run for 16 days. Liodanis Sanchez Barrio (26) and Ennier Guillermo Puig (27) both pleaded guilty after they were rounded up by the authorities when they were wandering in the vicinity of Lantern Point last Tuesday and taken into custody. They will be deported after serving their time, immigration officials have said.

Following a wave of migrant arrivals this year, five Cubans (one woman and four men) were sent back to Havana Thursday. But around 130 Cuban migrants are being detained by immigration officials at the detention centre at Fairbanks and in civic centres around Grand Cayman.

Given the difficulties the authorities are having with the increase in the numbers of migrants arriving in local waters in makeshift boats, Acting Chief Immigration Officer Bruce Smith welcomed the magistrate’s decision to jail the two migrants.

“We believe this sentence should be a deterrent to other migrants who land illegally,” he said. “The department will ensure that illegal immigration is met with strong action.”

Last week two other men who came ashore with Barrio and Puig but were returned to custody within a week were jailed for 10 days. Speaking through an interpreter, Eduardo Yasmani Tamayo Puig (28) and Daikel Alcolea Milan (32) pointed out that they were not criminals but simply wanted to live a better life and continue their journey to Honduras.

On 11 February, five Cubans who arrived in January and escaped from custody earlier this month were sentenced to just one day in prison after they all pleaded admitting leaving the William McLaughlin Civic Centre in East End, which is one of the overflow sites.

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Category: Crime, Immigration

Comments (10)

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  1. Wilbur says:

    Cayman cells a deterrent compared to you Cuban cell??? Lmao!!! Be careful mr. Smith you might have an influx of Cubans to our shores when they hear how good northward is.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Did someone with all there senses intact really post that?
    So now Cayman airways is having an all expense flight to Honduras specifically for refugees?
    How will this solve the problem. Make a trip to cayman on a boat and they will fly you into Honduras while sipping fruit punch! WTH

  3. Anonymous says:

    If they come here as refugees then they should behave themselves. I fully understand Cayman was not their intended port of call but here is where they have ended up. We cannot allow these people to wonder around the islands as they choose. Neither can we assist them to move on to a third country because it is against international laws. How would we like it if another country was assisting illegal immigrants to come here. Yes, our people went to Cuba in the early years to work but they went legally and I am sure abided by the rules of Cuba. I think now that Cuba is not as closed down with the advent of American planes now being allowed to fly in there shortly. Hopefully life will improve over there and they should see improvements in there way of life. I have never been in there shoes but I personally I believe there is finally a light at the end of the tunnel for them.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Why don’t we put them on a flight to Honduras? If that is their destination, and Honduras is willing to accept them, then wouldn’t it be safer and cheaper all around to fly them to Honduras where they can start their trek to the USA?

  5. Anonymous says:

    Really? How does this solve anything? Cayman is stuck in the middle, most Cubans fear the wet/foot dry foot approach is coming to an end.
    And are you saying that because they are refugees by choice they are not subject to follow the laws of the land and just wander around and come back when they so please?

    God forbid something bad happened you all would be up in arms over it.

    Stop talking out the two sides of your mouth!

  6. was this really necessary?I am sure there must be a reason for this but maybe someone could enlighten the general public as we are now paying even more to keep these folks on island

  7. Pedro says:

    Two questions: Is 100% of the cost of the returning of “immigrants” paid for by Caymanians? What does it cost to fly 100 people back to Cuba?

  8. Anonymous says:

    And how does this solve anything?

    • Anonymous says:

      To serve as a deterrent, they said. Unless you publish it on Cuba they will never know…. more money spend, and god forbids they get killed in jail…

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