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St. Croix Man Faces 5 Years If Convicted On Gun Charge

CHRISTIANSTED United States Attorney Delia L. Smith announced Friday that an information was filed charging Rionel Allembert, 21, of St. Croix, with possession of an unlicensed firearm and possession of a firearm with a school zone.

If convicted, Allembert faces up to five years in prison.

According to court documents, on September 28, 2021, members of the
Virgin Islands Police Department located a Taurus 9mm handgun in a ditch at #21 Anna’s Hope, St. Croix. DNA testing later revealed the presence of Allembert’s DNA on the firearm.

Allembert did not have a license to possess the firearm which was located approximately 290 feet from the Church of God of Holiness Academy,a pre school.

This case is being investigated by the Virgin Islands Police Department and members of the High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA) Task Force are investigating. Assistant U.S. Attorney Daniel H. Huston is prosecuting the case.

This case is part of the Department of Justice’s Project Safe Neighborhoods Initiative. Project Safe Neighborhoods is a nationwide initiative that brings together federal, state, local and tribal law enforcement officials, prosecutors, and community leaders to identify the most pressing violent crime problems in a community and develop comprehensive solutions to address them.

For moreinformation on the Department of Justice’s Project Safe Neighborhoods, please see:
United States Attorney Smith reminds the public that a criminal complaint is
merely a formal charging document and is not evidence of guilt. Every defendant is
presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty

By 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everything from coliform bacteria to Cryptosporidium in locally-bottled St. Croix drinking water, according to a then-unpublished University of the Virgin Islands sampling.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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