An 18-year-old Trinidadian man who came to St. Vincent and the Grenadines illegally in March says he did so because two rival gangs had threatened to kill him.
The man, Shaquille Brandon Miller, was arrested in Layou, a town on St. Vincent’s southwestern coast, on Friday and brought before Senior Magistrate Rickie Burnett at the Kingstown Magistrate’s Court on Monday.
He was charged with entering St. Vincent and the Grenadines without a passport, disembarking other than at a port of entry, and disembarking without the permission of an immigration officer.
Miller pleaded guilty to all three charges.
He told the court that there are two rival gangs in Trinidad, namely Rasta City and Muslim City.
Miller said that he was born and grew up in San Juan, Laventille, a Rasta City area.
He, however, said that his house was burnt in December 2015 so he moved to Oropune Gardens, a Muslim City area, to live with his grandmother, who was born in St. Vincent.
He said that in Layou, he was renting a house from his aunt, but the aunt had a disagreement with his grandmother, who was supporting him. He told the court that he saw the police coming and he did not run and when they told him he was under arrest, “I tell them, ‘Yeah. Leh we go.’”
The magistrate said: “I tell you what, the explanation that was given by you is one that appears to be correct, because, fortunately, I follow what is happening in Trinidad.” miller said yes through social media.
The magistrate said, “Mr. Miller, if you want to come back to St. Vincent, you are welcome to do so anytime, but you do it properly, use your passport, your ID card, either come in at the airport or one of the seaports. You understand? You can’t just slip into St. Vincent like that.”
Miller responded, “Yes, sir.”
Burnett who had earlier referred to “sweet SVG”, told Miller that he is going to order that he be deported “to sweet T&T”.
“I wish you all the best,” the magistrate said.
“I will not impose a fine because you seem unable to pay any fine. I will spare you that one,” Burnett further said.
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