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Jamaican sentenced to US prison for running human smuggling operation

A Jamaican man has been sentenced to more than two decades in prison in the United States for running a human smuggling operation.
 
Court records show 44 year old Michael Stapleton, who was extradited to the U.S. last year, was sentenced on Thursday to 21 years and 10 months.
 
A federal jury in South Florida found him guilty of 47 counts related to a people smuggling scheme.
 
Prosecutors say Stapleton coordinated the smuggling of undocumented immigrants to the United States from around the world through Freeport, Bahamas. 
 
Witnesses testified that the Jamaican used the vulnerability of the immigrants to exploit them by demanding more money after they were in his power, keeping them in deplorable conditions, mistreating them and sending them out in unsafe boats.
 


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