08 May 2011

Former Turks & Caicos Minister Denounces treatment by US Immigration Officials

*****  
Official was delayed at apparent behest of UK
   
Former Minister searched at Miami Airport 
 
Turks and Caicos Islands Sun
 
McAllister Eugene Hanchell, a former Government Minister under the Progressive National Party (PNP) in the Turks and Caicos Islands, was detained for about an hour and searched, at the Miami International Airport on Thursday May 5, 2011. He was not arrested. Hanchell, who is also known as Piper, said airport authorities told him they had reports that he was travelling with more than $10,000.
The following is the full statement from Hanchell:

“On May 5th 2011, I departed Providenciales, Turks and Caicos Islands on AA flight no. 1594 via Miami, USA en-route to Norfolk, VA, on AA flight no. 3523 for the purposes of visiting my oldest son Fabian Hanchell listed in the Navy of the United States of America before his 6 month deployment to defend his great Country, USA.

Upon my arrival two (2) uniformed male United States Border Control Officers were checking each passenger’s passport upon disembarkation from AA flight no. 1594.  When I presented my documentation I was asked to accompany the officers.

During my walk to be processed at Immigration I noticed two (2) non-uniformed officers a male and female all wearing identification badge joining us.

Immediately, after I was processed through Immigration accompanied by four (4) officers we walked downstairs where I was processed at Customs.  There I asked what this was all about, after travelling to the United States of America for more than half of my life this process is unusual. 

I was told by the officers that that they are advised from Providenciales, Turks & Caicos Islands that I am a suspect of bringing $10,000.00 or more  concealed in my carry-on luggage and was asked if I ever brought that amount of cash or currency otherwise into the United States of America, My reply was no.
I was asked to take everything out of my pockets, which was approximately $1,500.00 in cash, a telephone, a pen and a credit card holder.
An officer began to search my bag and halfway through the search he advised me that I can put the cash in my pockets and leave the remaining items and proceed with the other officers to a room inside the general customs area for a few questions.
 I replied to the officers that I reserve my right to be present while my bag is being searched. They continued the search in my presence and then closed the bag.  I was asked if my telephone is unlocked, I said yes. Then they kept my telephone, Credit Card holder and Travel Itinerary and proceeded to a room within the general customs area.
I was asked the same questions as mentioned above, (and) shortly thereafter was told to remain in the room while they processed this information.  They later returned to the room to inform me that they made a few phone calls and were waiting to hear from their sources. Shortly thereafter they returned for a second time and said that I checked out and that I was free to go and good luck to my son in the US NAVY.
My reply to them was to tell the BRITISH TO GET OFF MY BACK! The officer said they cannot reveal their source but smiled at me.  Here I took the opportunity to tell the Officers that it is public knowledge that I am former member of the Government of the Turks and Caicos Islands, where there was a public commission of inquiry into allegations of Corruption commissioned by one white retired British Judge who further recommended a Criminal Investigation which is currently ongoing.     

I was told that whenever I travel into the USA again I may be subjected to the same checks. I offered my Telephone number and asked for the officers number in return so that I can inform them myself of my travels to the USA because I have nothing to hide. The officer told me not to worry because they will know when I am travelling. The entire ordeal took no more than one (1) hour and never at any time was I arrested. I flew to Virginia Beach, VA as scheduled and I’m having a wonderful time with my oldest son.
I write the above for the sake of completeness because we live in a culture of rumors and to mainly expose the British occupation for their Harassment in the Turks and Caicos Islands towards Turks and Caicos Islanders and their continuous attempt to embarrass us all.

I would like to take this opportunity to inform all of our Citizens that our Country is being re-colonized by the British, who continue to use former elected Politicians as their conduit. I for one will not be used and will expose them every opportunity I have. 

This is not the first time they ( THE BRITISH) have tried to intimidate me, they have intervened the banking credit processes and prejudice the Physical Planning Board Process as it relate to me. However I remain confident and not afraid.  I am a victim of Political exploitation by Britain in a modern day coup d’├ętat, re-colonizing and marginalizing of the Turks and Caicos Islands and its people for their now obvious occupation and control of our Country.