1 arraigned in capsized boat case

Published On: Oct 31 2013 03:01:56 PM EDT   Updated On: Oct 31 2013 06:40:28 PM EDT

One man was arraigned Thursday on federal charges after a boat capsized off South Florida, killing four women and leaving survivors clinging to its hull.

George Lewis, 38, of the Bahamas, was charged with conspiracy to encourage and induce aliens to enter the United States resulting in death and involuntary manslaughter. If convicted, he faces a maximum sentence of life in prison or death.

The arraignment for Naaman Davis, 53, was postponed.

Three Jamaican nationals -- Matthews Williams, 30; Everton Jones, 40; and, Kenard Hagigal, 35 -- were indicted on charges of illegal reentry into the U.S. by an aggravated felon. A fourth passenger, Sean Gaynor, 37, of Jamaica, was indicted on a charge of illegal reentry into the United States.

Williams, Jones, Bryce, and Hagigal face a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison. Gaynor faces a maximum sentence of 2 years in prison.

Last week, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement released four Haitians who survived the capsizing. All four victims have been identified.

Thousands of migrants from Haiti, Cuba and other Caribbean countries attempt to illegally enter the U.S. each year by attempting risky sea voyages in overloaded or unseaworthy vessels, often through established smuggling networks that include islands in the Bahamas and Turks and Caicos.


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