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Security authorities probing possible human smuggling operation

The Jamaican authorities are investigating what appears to be a smuggling operation involving Indian nationals passing through Jamaica.
 
Immigration authorities denied entry to 218 Indian foreigners, mostly Indian nationals who arrived on the charter flight on Friday.
 
Radio Jamaica sources say the flight transited through Dubai and then made a stop in the Egyptian capital Cairo where an Uzbek national was picked up before heading to Jamaica.
 
Another citizen of Uzbekistan, who had also arrived on a previous flight and was initially landed, later had his landing revoked and detained when the authorities started investigating the Indian charter flight. 
 
Based on Radio Jamaica checks, the Uzbek National is of interest to security and government officials in the United States.
 
The aircraft, a white and blue Airbus A-340, registered in Germany, has also been impounded and remains on the tarmac at Kingston's Norman Manley International Airport.
 
Law enforcement sources tell Radio Jamaica News that the charter airline did not state it was arriving in Jamaica on Friday, neither was a passenger manifest sent ahead of its arrival as is required. Nevertheless, Civil Aviation officials allowed the aircraft to land.  
 
Checks revealed that the charter had no arrangement to take the passengers back to their destination which aroused the suspicion of authorities.
 
Radio Jamaica News has learnt that the passengers, although denied entry, were permitted to go to the ROK Hotel in down Town Kingston where there are officially under police guard.
 
When we pressed our sources on why they were allowed to go to the hotel, we were told that Jamaica has no detention centre at the airport and no space in its remand centres for so many people.
 
Our source added that the passengers were actually booked to stay at the hotel even though they had not paid for the rooms and that was why officials allowed them to go there. 
 
However when Radio Jamaica News visited downtown Kingston, several dozen persons believed to be passengers from the charter flight were observed walking around, shopping, buying food, taking pictures on the water front and generally enjoying the scenery.
 
There were reports that some may have left the hotel entirely.
 
 


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