NASSAU — The Bahamas needs additional help from the United States to effectively deal with criminal deportees from that country, Prime Minister Perry Christie said yesterday.
Christie said the United States’ policy of deporting people who commit crimes is a major issue for The Bahamas and the wider Caribbean.
He said the issue came up at a meeting with US Vice President Joe Biden and Caribbean leaders in Trinidad last weekend.
“When I was at the office in Miami two days ago, I was given a list of a dozen young persons who the Americans are waiting on The Bahamas to agree to be returned to The Bahamas because America is expelling them,”‚said Christie outside the House of Assembly.
“What happens is that these people who are exposed to criminal practices, they come home.
“Obviously some of them don’t even know about The Bahamas because they left as a child, but because the Americans have this policy, they have to come here and we cannot resist their coming here.
“So what we are concerned about in the region, and that’s what we spoke to the vice president about, is that we need additional resources, additional cooperation and additional levels of intelligence so that we are able to more effectively deal with the export to the region, of people who were connected to criminal enterprises in the Untied States of America.”
Minister of State for National Security Keith Bell recently criticised the United States for issuing warnings to its citizens travelling to The Bahamas when it has deported a large number of criminals to this country over the years.
According to the Immigration Enforcement Actions: 2011 report, 957 Bahamians convicted of criminal offences were deported from the United States to the Bahamas between 2002 and 2011. (Nassau Guardian)