British Virgin Islands

Saturday, Nov 28, 2020

Vessel fined $20K for illegal entry; Another detained

Vessel fined $20K for illegal entry; Another detained

A vessel determined to be illegally in Virgin Islands waters by the surveillance platform on November 19, 2020, was detained and slapped with a $20,000 fine by Her Majesty’s Customs, according to reports reaching our news centre.

Some four persons were reportedly in the vessel.

Our information was confirmed by Comptroller of Customs, Mr Wade N. Smith, who also said another vessel has since been detained.

Mr Smith did not indicate if any charges have been laid.

New line of defence against COVID-19


It was on November 9, 2020, that our newsroom had reported that a charter vessel was fined $20,000 for illegal entry after it was detected by the surveillance platform, which has been yielding results since its introduction in August.

The Virgin Islands had heightened its border surveillance following a spike in COVID-19 cases in August, which was blamed on human smuggling and illegal entry.

The Territory has since returned to zero reported active cases of COVID-19.

According to Premier and Minister of Finance, Hon Andrew A. Fahie (R1), back in August 2020, the Customs and Immigration officers will be working from marine platforms in shifts so that there will be a more intense 24-hour surveillance of the borders.

He had said the platforms will also form part of a launching point for patrol and intercepting suspicious vessels as part of a new line of defence.

“It is a lot to ask of the team because these shifts will be long hours on the sea, but our officers have expressed their commitment, and we are grateful to them and their families for what they are doing to help keep everyone safe,” the Premier had said.


Reports of the detained vessel were confirmed by Comptroller of Customs, Mr Wade N. Smith, who also said another vessel has since been detained.


Back in August 2020, Premier and Minister of Finance, Hon Andrew A. Fahie (R1) announced that Customs and Immigration officers will be working from marine platforms in shifts so that there will be a more intense 24-hour surveillance of the borders.


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