CI Immigration Department recorded 250 offences in 2010

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    Cayman Islands Immigration Department officers arrested 163 people for 182 alleged breaches of various immigration offences last year, and another 87 individuals gave themselves up as part of a month-long amnesty programme in July.

    According to records provided by the department, the arrests for 182 alleged offences under the Immigration Law involved mostly overstaying and work-related violations.

    Comparatively few cases of illegal landings or harbouring illegal immigrants were reported in 2010.

    The most common immigration offences reported in 2010 were overstaying, working without a permit, making false representation and working outside the terms of a permit.

    A total of 88 cases of overstaying were reported last year in Cayman, nearly half of all the immigration-related offences for which people were arrested.

    Various work permit violations accounted for 46 reported violations, roughly 25 per cent of offences detected by immigration in 2010.

    Only five cases of illegal landing were reported by immigration officials, four incidents in which someone else caused a person to overstay in the Islands, and one incident in which an individual helped someone enter illegally.

    Three people were arrested in 2010 for purporting to provide immigration services, and three reports of altering immigration-related documents were made.

    The vast majority of people arrested for immigration offences were males, making up nearly 71 per cent of the 163 offenders. Alleged offenders were spread fairly evenly across the all adult age groups, but individuals in their late 20s and early 40s were among those most often arrested for immigration violations in 2010.

    Amnesty

    The arrest figures for 2010 do not include the 87 people who participated in the Immigration Department’s amnesty programme by turning themselves in for various offences.

    The amnesty period ran from 1 July to 1 August.

    Deputy Chief Immigration Officer for Enforcement Gary Wong said the amnesty focused on those who were overstaying or working without valid permits. Overstayers again made up the majority of those who departed.

    Department officials said the amnesty effort allowed 67 male and 20 female overstayers to depart without prosecution. By nationality, 50 were from Jamaica; 10 were from the United States; four from Canada; and three or fewer were from Honduras, Nicaragua, India, South Africa, Colombia, Cuba, the Philippines, Costa Rica, Guyana, Panama, St. Vincent and the Grenadines and the United Kingdom.

    Immigration officers said one of the group of 87 people removed from the Islands during the amnesty had managed to live illegally in Cayman for 12 years.

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    The most common immigration offences reported in 2010 were overstaying, working without a permit, making false representation and working outside the terms of a permit.
    Photo: File
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