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August 21, 2009
Immigration officer charged with forgery

A 20-year-old Immigration Officer has tendered his resignation following criminal charges brought against him on Tuesday August 18, 2009.{{more}}

Cane End resident J’var Francis was granted $7,000 bail after he appeared at the Kingstown Magistrate’s Court and pleaded not guilty to falsifying a travel document (passport) for the purpose of assisting Alixzo Jose’ Martinez of Venezuela, at Kingstown between April 13 and May 20, 2009.

Senior Magistrate Donald Browne ordered Francis to surrender his travel documents and National Identification card. He is also to report to the Mesopotamia Police Station on Mondays and Fridays between 6am-6pm.

Martinez, who was deported from St Vincent on May 22, had pleaded guilty to entering the state illegally. Despite this, Martinez’s passport bore an immigration stamp indicating that he had gained entry into the state legally.

According to police sources, investigations continued into the matter after Martinez was deported. During that time, several checks were made with LIAT, the Customs Department and the Immigration Department and no records were found to show that Martinez had entered the country.

After two months of work, police investigations led to Francis.

The matter has been adjourned to October 13 for hearing.