St. Croix’s Dequan Forde Admits To Smuggling 20 Pounds of Marijuana From MIA To STX
CHRISTIANSTED — A St. Croix man admitted in federal court on Thursday that he smuggled nearly 20 pounds of marijuana from Miami to Frederiksted last year.
Dequan Forde, 21, pled guilty in U.S. District Court to one federal count of possession of marijuana with intent to distribute, U.S. Attorney Gretchen C.F. Shappert said.
The offense carries a possible prison sentence of up to five years, a maximum fine of up to $250,000 dollars and a term of supervised release of at least two years, according to Shappert.
Sentencing for Forde is set for October 9, she said.
While free awaiting trial on the 2018 federal charges, Forde has been accused of a host of other crimes by the Virgin Islands Police Department (VIPD), including home invasion, armed robbery and illegal gun possession.
According to court documents, on January 31, 2018, Forde traveled on American Airlines flight #2317 from Miami to St. Croix.
Upon his landing at the Henry E. Rohlsen Airport on St. Croix, an x-ray examination of Forde’s luggage displayed unusual packaging.
A physical examination of the luggage revealed a laundry bag that contained two vacuumed-sealed bags containing suspected marijuana.
The luggage was subsequently placed on the baggage carousel where Forde retrieved it.
The total gross weight of the marijuana was approximately 9.40 kilograms, or about 20 pounds.
The case was investigated by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and U.S. Homeland Security Investigations (HSI).
The marijuana was analyzed by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration’s Southeast Laboratory in Miami.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Daniel H. Huston prosecuted the case.