Tue | Sep 29, 2020

News Briefs

Published:Thursday | August 22, 2019 | 12:00 AM

J’can woman pleads guilty to arranging 28 sham marriages in US

BRIDGEPORT, Connecticut (AP):

A Jamaican woman in Connecticut who federal prosecutors say helped arrange 28 sham marriages to obtain immigration benefits for non-citizens has pleaded guilty.

The Connecticut Post reports that 35-year-old Jodian Stephenson, of Bridgeport, pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit immigration marriage fraud in federal court in New Haven Monday.

Prosecutors say one of the sham marriages was between Stephenson and a US citizen.

Officials say she introduced the couples, organized the marriage celebration and ceremony and coached them on how to make their relationship and marriage appear real.

She would charge up to $20,000 to fill out immigration paperwork and complete the process. Stephenson faces up to five years in prison.



Brace for water shortages, NWC warns customers


The National Water Commission (NWC) is urging Jamaicans to brace for more water restrictions as the worsening drought conditions continue to take a toll on major catchment facilities.

NWC said that consumers in north-eastern parishes should brace for more disruptions to their water supply as 29 of its systems in St Ann, Portland and St Mary continue to be affected by the dry spell.

The NWC said 13 systems in St Ann have recorded declining levels and are currently operating between nine and 50 per cent, while pump stations in the Dawson Town and Content have been taken out of service as there are no inflows.

The commission also noted that nine systems in Portland and seven in St Mary have been affected, with the Derry Hazzard, Fellowship Hall and Hunts Town facilities now empty.

The NWC warned that with some sources completely dried up, it is proving to be a challenge for it to effectively service its customers in these parishes.

It said as a result, several mitigation measures have been implemented, including supply regulation, pressure management, storage building and trucking.



Tropical Storm Chantal forms in North Atlantic

HAMILTON, Bermuda (CMC):

A new tropical storm has formed in the Atlantic north of Bermuda, but currently poses no threat to land, forecasters said yesterday.

Chantal, which formed late on Tuesday, is only the third named storm of the Atlantic season, but meteorologists expect activity to pick up in the run-up to the statistical peak on September 10.

Forecasters are also monitoring an area of disturbed weather over The Bahamas, which could bring rain and flooding to South Florida this weekend.

At noon Bermuda time yesterday, Chantal, located 455 miles south of Cape Race, Newfoundland, was packing winds of 40 miles per hour with higher gusts and heading east at 20 mph. Gradual weakening is anticipated with Chantal expected to become a tropical depression in a couple of days’ time.

The experts say it is unusual for a storm to develop so far north, but water temperatures are running three to four degrees Fahrenheit above average in the North Atlantic.



Suspected car thief killed in fiery crash

PORT-OF-SPAIN, Trinidad (CMC):

Police believe that the unidentified man who died after being trapped inside a burning vehicle may have earlier robbed the owner of the vehicle before crashing it into another vehicle yesterday.

They said the accident occurred in Cumuto, Trinidad, as the car thief lost control of the Nissan Tiida vehicle, crashing it into a van carrying watermelons.

The police said that the car had been stolen from a man who has since been hospitalised after being stabbed during the robbery.

Police said the suspect was burnt to death when the vehicle hit the van and exploded into flames, trapping him inside.

The driver of the other vehicle suffered minor injuries.