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Two Men Who Brought $88,000 Cash From BVI Charged With Making False Statements

CHARLOTTE AMALIE – A BVI native and a Florida man who allegedly brought a combined $88,000 to the territory in their luggage from the BVI were charged with two federal crimes in St. Thomas today.

A federal Grand Jury today returned separate indictments against Mikiel Robin, 21, of Road Town, Tortola and Akil Erickson, 25, of Orlando, for Bulk Cash Smuggling and False Statements, U.S. Attorney Gretchen Shappert said.

The indictment against Robin alleges that he entered the United States from Tortola and failed to declare that he was carrying approximately $38,000 in his travel bag, according to Shappert.

The indictment against Erickson alleges that during the same period he too entered the United States from Tortola with about $50,000 in United States currency and falsely claimed that he was not traveling with that amount of currency.

According to court records, Erickson was booked in Orange County, Florida for trafficking controlled substances on December 23, 2015.

Under federal law, each man faces a maximum sentence of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

Shappert said that an indictment is merely a formal charging document and is not in and of itself evidence of guilt.

“Every defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty,” she said.

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The Author

John McCarthy

John McCarthy

John McCarthy is primarily known for his investigative reporting on the U.S. Virgin Islands. A series of reports beginning in the 1990's revealed that there was everything from coliform bacteria to Cryptosporidium in locally-bottled St. Croix drinking water, according to a then-unpublished University of the Virgin Islands sampling. Another report, following Hurricane Hugo in 1989, cited a Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) confidential overview that said that over 40 percent of the U.S. Virgin Islands public lives below the poverty line. The Virgin Islands Free Press is the only Caribbean news source to regularly incorporate the findings of U.S. Freedom of Information Act requests. John's articles have appeared in the BVI Beacon, St. Croix Avis, San Juan Star and Virgin Islands Daily News. He is the former news director of WSVI-TV Channel 8 on St. Croix.

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