Canada Husband of Regina woman charged in human smuggling operation, is one of three people arrested on American side of border

16:46  21 april  2017
16:46  21 april  2017 Source:   Leader Post

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  Alleged migrant smugglers profit-driven: Crown Four men who orchestrated a dangerous voyage across the Pacific were out to make a profit, rather than mutually help dozens of Tamil asylum seekers, the Crown prosecutor told their B.C. Supreme Court trial. In closing arguments at the human smuggling trial on Tuesday, Maggie Loda said the accused held a privileged position on board the MV Ocean Lady, taking part in operating the vessel, preparing the journey and helping migrants get aboard.

Three people have been arrested on the American side of the Saskatchewan/North Dakota border in relation to the a human smuggling investigation that also netted charges against a Regina woman . On Friday

REGINA — Last Friday evening, as Mounties arrested a Saskatchewan woman as part of a human smuggling investigation, U.S. border patrol agents moved in on the woman ’s husband , a Nigerian citizen and another Canadian on the North Dakota side of the border .

041917-omoruyi.jpg-234324139-omoruyi-W.jpg © Facebook 041917-omoruyi.jpg-234324139-omoruyi-W.jpg

Last Friday evening, as Mounties arrested a Saskatchewan woman as part of a human smuggling investigation, U.S. border patrol agents moved in on the woman’s husband, a Nigerian citizen and another Canadian on the North Dakota side of the border.

So far, authorities have declined to release many details about the suspected smuggling operation. But a senior U.S. border official said Thursday the growing numbers of migrants seeking to jump the border has everyone on high alert.

“It’s on everybody’s radar,” said Alan Zeitvogel, acting division chief of operations for U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

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The husband of a Regina woman charged with human smuggling is in custody in the United States after arrests in that country as part of the same cross- border investigation. U.S. immigration officials confirm that Victor Omoruyi, a Canadian citizen originally from Nigeria

GRAND FORKS—The husband of a Canadian woman being charged with human smuggling is being held in the Grand Forks County Correctional Center, jail records show. In the U.S., Border Patrol agents arrested multiple people related to the investigation, Canadian officials said.

On Wednesday, authorities announced that Michelle Omoruyi, 43, of Regina, was facing human smuggling charges after she was stopped by RCMP last Friday evening driving a vehicle near the border with nine foreign nationals from West Africa.

The nine individuals had bypassed formal channels, entering the country instead somewhere between the North Portal and Northgate ports of entry.

They subsequently filed refugee claims and were released from CBSA custody pending the outcome of their refugee hearings.

The following day, police searched a home in Regina and found a significant amount of cash — some in foreign currency, RCMP said.

Over a four-month investigation, “the (Canada Border Services Agency) uncovered evidence to suggest suspected smugglers were allegedly bringing foreign nationals into Canada from the United States by facilitating their illegal crossing between designated ports of entry,” Jason Evert, a CBSA assistant director, told reporters Wednesday.

Woman charged with smuggling asylum seekers into Canada

  Woman charged with smuggling asylum seekers into Canada A Canadian woman has been arrested for allegedly smuggling foreign nationals into Canada, contributing to a recent wave of asylum seekers walking across the border from the US, police said Wednesday. Michelle Omoruyi, 43, was stopped near the Canada-US border last Friday and charged under Canada's immigration and refugee protection act.Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) Staff Sergeant Donovan Fisher told a press conference "nine foreign nationals were (also) intercepted while crossing the border into Canada."At the same time, "several" people were picked up by a border patrol in the US state of North Dakota, he said.

GRAND FORKS—The husband of a Canadian woman being charged with human smuggling is being held in the Grand Forks County Correctional Center, jail records show. In the U.S., Border Patrol agents arrested multiple people related to the investigation, Canadian officials said.

GRAND FORKS—The husband of a Canadian woman being charged with human smuggling is being held in the Grand Forks County Correctional Center, jail records show. In the U.S., Border Patrol agents arrested multiple people related to the investigation, Canadian officials said.

Officials with U.S. Customs and Border Protection said Thursday in a statement that around the time Mounties intercepted Omoruyi and the nine passengers, their own agents apprehended two Canadian citizens and a Nigerian citizen on the North Dakota side of the border between the North Portal and Northgate ports of entry.

The National Post has confirmed one of those individuals is Michelle Omoruyi’s husband, Victor Omoruyi, 40.  He was being held Thursday at the Grand Forks County Correctional Center.

The identities of the other two —  a man and a woman — could not be verified, but Zeitvogel confirmed all three were still in custody and charges were still pending.

“These apprehensions were the direct result of a combined effort which included the United States Border Patrol, U.S. Customs and Border Protection Office of Field Operations, Burke County Sheriff’s Office, Royal Canadian Mounted Police, and the Canada Border Services Agency,” the CBP statement said.

It is not known how many other people may be connected to the suspected smuggling operation. The charges against Omoruyi have not been proven in court.

According to new federal data, the number of asylum seekers caught crossing the border irregularly during the first three months of this year climbed nationwide from 315 in January, to 658 in February, to 887 in March. Most cases occurred in Quebec, Manitoba and B.C.

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