United States Attorney's Office for the Middle District of Louisiana

06/29/2020 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 06/29/2020 13:01

Jamaican National Sentenced to 40 Months in Federal Prison for Conspiracy to Smuggle Cocaine Aboard a Cargo Ship

United States Attorney Brandon Fremin announced that United States District Court Judge Brian A. Jackson sentenced Stephano Walkers, age 25, of Jamaica, to serve 40 months in federal prison following his conviction for conspiracy to bring or possess cocaine on board of a vessel arriving in the United States.

According to admissions made as part of his guilty plea, Walters was arrested on February 13, 2019 by Homeland Security Investigations ('HSI') agents that were conducting surveillance of cargo ships arriving into the United States. Walters had smuggled over nine kilograms of cocaine onto a Jamaican cargo ship called the 'Bulk Pangea' that was bound for the United States. After docking in the United States, Walters then transported the cocaine to Baton Rouge. There, he was arrested by HSI agents while attempting to deliver the cocaine to members of a drug trafficking organization.

U.S. Attorney Fremin stated, 'Aliens who come into the United States with the intent of committing crimes pose a serious threat to the safety of our citizens. Our office is committed to working with our federal, state, and local partners to apprehend, convict, and remove this menace from our country. I want to commend our prosecutor and our partners at HSI who worked diligently throughout this investigation and prosecution.

'HSI is committed to holding all those involved in transnational drug smuggling accountable,' said Jere T. Miles, Special Agent in Charge for HSI New Orleans. 'We will continue to work with our law enforcement partners and the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Middle District of Louisiana to keep our communities safe.'

This matter was investigated by U.S. Immigration and Homeland Security Investigations and prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Peter J. Smyczek.