Two Immigration Officers – a senior and a junior – are implicated in in a serious matter involving passport fraud at the V.C. Bird International Airport, sources claim.
According to reports, one month ago, a Jamaican national who had been deported to his homeland from Canada arrived in Antigua and Barbuda. The man is said to have arrived on a valid Jamaican passport and, therefore, was legally landed here.
It is alleged that, last week, he attempted to leave this country and return to Canada aboard a Sunwing Airlines flight. However, the Canadian passport he presented was reportedly found to be a stolen document.
An Immigration Officer is said to have noticed there was no record of the man having entered the country on that Canadian passport, and the matter was investigated.
Sources say the investigation confirmed that the man had arrived here, from Jamaica, on a Jamaican passport – and, further, that he had been deported from Canada and was trying to return there via Antigua.
It is alleged that two Immigration Officers had colluded to place an “arrival stamp” in the stolen Canadian passport the Jamaican had in his possession. It is also alleged that they had forged the signature of another officer.
Persons close to the reported investigation claim that one of the accused immediately fell ill after learning he had been found out, while the other has been suspended pending further investigation into this matter.
The Jamaican national is said to be in custody at the Immigration Department’s Detention Centre in the meantime.
The sources point to these latest allegations of security breaches as proof that the Department is in disarray and in need of leadership.
They note, too, that it has been six weeks since the disappearance of the seven transiting Indian nationals and almost four weeks since five Haitians went missing from the Department’s Detention Centre.
And, yet, they say, no discipline has been meted out to the supervisor or officers on duty, which they see as another indictment on the Chief and management.