July 4, 2022

Cayman Islands Customs Airport arrest: Smuggling of ganja

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From Cayman Islands Customs department

On Sunday, 13th January 2019, Customs Officers at the Owen Roberts International Airport arrested a 35-year-old, male, Caymanian, Department of Environmental Health employee for Importation of Ganja and Possession with intent to supply Ganja.

He was arrested following his arrival on Cayman Airways flight 103 from Miami. The suspect attempted to exit the Customs Hall through our Green Channel where he was challenged by our officers based on their observation. He was then referred for secondary examination where the ganja was discovered concealed in his checked luggage.

This is the second arrest by Customs officers at the airport since the beginning of the New Year. The first arrest was for a small portion of ganja and is unrelated to this second, more significant arrest.

Collector of Customs Charles Clifford said, “We have undertaken a number of initiatives, such as the new policy that persons within their duty-free allowance are not required to complete the Customs Declaration Form and may proceed directly to the Customs Green Channel upon entry, in order to expedite the flow of arriving passengers through our Customs Arrivals Hall. However, we again remind and urge persons to be honest about their declarations and ensure that they are not travelling with prohibited or restricted goods, as they will be referred to secondary for further scrutiny and thorough examination should Customs officers suspect that they have criminal intent or are not being honest about their declaration.”

Mr. Clifford emphasized this point by stating that, “This latest arrest is another example of the consequences that can occur when persons attempt to go through the Green Channel with criminal intend.”

Deputy Collector of Customs Jeff Jackson who has responsibility for the Customs Border Protection Portfolio, said “Our frontline officers continue to maintain constant vigilance in their daily duties, and are responsible for knowing what arriving passengers are bringing with them and whether it poses a risk to the public. Our officers are equally cognizant of their responsibility to collect revenue that is due to our government, and this most recent interception and arrest further illustrate the effectiveness of our training and strategies.”

Mr. Jackson continued, “The merger of our Customs and Immigration departments will undoubtedly result in even more successes with interdicting the movement of illicit goods and persons with criminal intent.”  

This investigation is ongoing and is being led by our Customs Narcotics Enforcement Team.

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