By NICO SCAVELLA
Tribune Staff Reporter
A 27-year-old Jamaican man was fined and recommended to be deported on Friday for turning a brief visit to his mother into a two-year stay.
Tristan Dobson, of Westmoreland, was fined $1,000 by Acting Deputy Chief Magistrate Subusola Swain for overstaying by two years and 17 days.
Failure to pay the fine would result in three months imprisonment, the acting deputy chief magistrate said.
According to a summary of the facts read of by Immigration officer Fred Smith, who was assisted by Lashandawn Adderley, Dobson was arrested by immigration officers at 10:15am on Tuesday and taken to the Carmichael Road Detention Centre (CRDC) for immigration purposes.
While there, he was questioned about whether he had any documents proving his status in the country. He told officers that he had a passport, and that he had overstayed by only two weeks.
However, various checks were subsequently made using the Department of Immigration’s Permit Issuing System and the Border Control Management System, which revealed that Dobson had entered the country legally by plane on July 7, 2017 and was granted a seven-day stay. On July 13, he was granted an extension to stay until July 28.
However, he made no more applications for an extension of time. And neither did he apply for any form of legal status in the country.
Dobson's attorney, Bernard Ferguson, said in mitigation that his client initially entered the country to visit his mother, who he was instructed has legal status to be in the Bahamas. However, Mr Ferguson said, his client “wanted at some point to seek a better way of life”, hence his overstaying.
Meanwhile, six Haitian men were fined $1,800 collectively for landing in the country illegally between Tuesday and Wednesday of this week.
With the assistance of translator Charlene Jean, Timoalyn Pierre, Esnel Pierre, Orne Pierre, Jerry Vixamar; James Olibert; and Kinstan Seus each admitted to landing in New Providence without leave of an immigration officer.
They were each fined $300 or ordered otherwise to spend 30 days in prison. They were ordered to be turned over to immigration officials upon payment of the fine or serving their time for deportation.