Fishermen detained by US Coast Guard could sue Jamaican gov’t too


Senior defence attorney Bert Samuels says the four Jamaican fishermen who have brought a case against the United States Coast Guard alleging egregious mistreatment and human rights violations in 2017 could have a case against their own Government.

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) on June 12 filed a lawsuit against the US Coast Guard seeking damages on behalf of Luther Fian Patterson, Robert Dexter Weir, Patrick Wayne Ferguson, and David Roderick Williams, who it says were “secretly detained without due process at sea in inhumane conditions on four coast guard ships for over a month”.Another fisherman was also detained in the incident on September 14, 2017 in which the men’s vessel was stopped in international waters off the coast of Haiti. According to the claim, the US Coast Guard destroyed the Jamaican-registered boat, the JossetteWH 478 and the men were held at sea for just over a month, shackled, and left exposed on the decks of multiple coast guard ships, which made stops in Guantanamo Bay, the US Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, and Miami. The men say they were held under inhumane conditions, abused, and prevented from contacting their loved ones to inform them they were alive.(Jamaica Observer)…[+]