CHRISTIANSTED – A St. Thomas man faces five years in prison after pleading guilty in federal court today to smuggling 14 pounds of marijuana into the territory, authorities said.
Tarik Babrow, 24, of Hospital Ground in St. Thomas, appeared before U.S. Magistrate Judge George W. Cannon Jr., in U.S. District Court and pleaded guilty to conspiracy to possess marijuana with intent to distribute, U.S. Attorney Gretchen C.F. Shappert said.
According to court documents, on February 11, 2021, Babrow and three other co-conspirators flew into the Henry E. Rohlsen Airport on St. Croix on American Airlines flight number 2003 from Charlotte, North Carolina. Upon their arrival, several pieces of luggage were selected for physical inspection after anomalies were observed while the luggage was examined by an X-ray machine.
A subsequent search revealed several clear, vacuum sealed bundles containing a green, leafy substance, which later field-tested positive for marijuana. In total, approximately 6.33 kilograms of suspected marijuana was seized from Babrow and his co-conspirators.
In addition, $2,871 was seized from him as drug trafficking proceeds. Babrow is scheduled to be sentenced on October 28, 2021, and faces a maximum penalty of five years in prison.
A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after considering the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.
Customs and Border Protection and Homeland Security Investigations investigated the case. Assistant U.S. Attorney Daniel H. Huston is prosecuting the case.
This effort is part of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces (OCDETF) operation.
OCDETF identifies, disrupts, and dismantles the highest-level criminal organizations that threaten the United States using a prosecutor-led, intelligence-driven, multi-agency approach.
Additional information about the OCDETF Program can be found at https://www.justice.gov/OCDETF.