District Court Judge Curtis V. Gomez on Thursday sentenced Ashemba Frett, 22, of Tortola, British Virgin Islands, to three months in prison and three years of supervised release for encouraging and inducing aliens to illegally enter the United States, U.S. Attorney Ronald W. Sharpe announced.
Gomez ordered Frett to pay a $100 special assessment and perform 300 hours of community service.
Frett pleaded guilty March 3 to encouraging and inducing aliens to illegally enter the United States. According to the plea agreement filed with the court, the Coast Guard conducted a safety stop on a vessel in Jersey Bay, St. Thomas. The vessel was operated by an unidentified individual. Frett jumped into the water but was apprehended.
A Haitian national and a national from the Dominican Republic were on board the vessel. Frett admitted that the Dominican Republic national paid him $700 to travel to St. Thomas from Tortola and that Frett knew he did not possess the proper documents to lawfully enter the United States.
The case was investigated by the USSG, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Office of Air and Marine, and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations. It was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Sigrid M. Tejo-Sprotte.