• Did The Bahamas Gov.t collude with US authority to have poor hardworking class straw vendors arrested?
• We here at BP want to know why the US merchants who were selling the goods not arrested?
• Is it now illegal to go to a shop or mall to purchase goods in the US?
• What role did the Bay Street Merchants inculding John Bull and the Greek Mafia have to do with the arrest of 9 poor hard working Bahamians?
• And while we are at it, what interests does Brent Symonette have out at Arawak Cay for him to be going out there two to three times a week? Is he now the Minister of Transport or Works? WE HAVE THE PICTURES and will soon do an expose’ on the port deal. WE WILL FOLLOW THE MONEY!
Ministry of Foreign Affairs addresses arrest of straw vendors in New York
NASSAU, The Bahamas – The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has sought to clarify the circumstances surrounding the arrest and detention of nine Bahamian straw vendors in New York.
In a statement released Wednesday, September 22, 2010, the Ministry, in light of public views, revealed details on the matter.
On September 19, 2010 at 12:43 a.m., a staff member of the Consulate General in New York, received information from a relative regarding the arrest and detention of nine Bahamian female straw vendors and was informed that they were being held at the Metropolitan Correctional Centre (MCC) in New York City.
Upon entering the office on Sunday, September 19, 2010, the Consul General discovered a fax sent by officials from the Department of Homeland Security on Saturday, September 18, 2010 at approximately 2:10 p.m., advising of the arrest and detention of the above-mentioned Bahamian nationals.
Officials from the Department of Homeland Security are in possession of emergency numbers at which the Consul General can be contacted.
On Sunday, September 19, 2010 at 1:30 p.m. Consul General Carl Smith spoke with Mr. Albert Sypioe of the Department of Homeland Security, who briefed him on the situation. He was informed that 11 straw vendors had been scheduled to return to The Bahamas from JFK Airport via jet Blue flight at 6 a.m. on Saturday, September 18, 2010, nine of whom had been detained, arrested and processed.
The Consul General was also advised that the persons would be arraigned on Monday, September 20, 2010 and that information regarding the subsequent charges would be conveyed to him.
The Consul General visited the Metropolitan Correctional Centre (MCC) on Sunday, September 19, 2010, but was unable to see the Bahamian nationals as the Legal Department, which approves such visits, was closed.
The Consul General made a formal request on September 19, 2010 to conduct a Consular visit.
The nine Bahamians were arraigned on Monday, September 20 at 4:10 p.m. on charges of conspiracy in the trafficking of counterfeit goods and services in violation of Title 18 Section 2320(A) (1) United States Code.
The Bahamian nationals have been assigned lawyers by the US Court and the Ministry has been advised that attorneys have been obtained by family members to monitor the judicial process in the United States.
The Ministry understands that the matter of bail and cash bonds is currently being addressed. The Consul General, who has been following this matter from the time it was brought to the Consulate General’s attention, was present in court for the arraignment of the Bahamians on Monday, September 20, 2010.
The Consulate General will continue to monitor the cases of these Bahamians to ensure that their rights and welfare are protected in accordance with the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations 1963, to which the United States of America and the Commonwealth of the Bahamas are party.