WASHINGTON — Four Jamaican fishermen were held for nearly a month aboard U.S. Coast Guard vessels in the Caribbean Sea, most of the time chained outside in the blistering sun and through strong storms. That’s according to a lawsuit filed Wednesday by the American Civil Liberties Union.
The men were picked up Sept. 14, 2017. The Coast Guard would not comment specifically on the litigation, but said the crew were seen dumping marijuana into the water. The Coast Guard said the Jamaican authorities gave permission for the men to be taken to the U.S. for prosecution.
The men pleaded guilty to providing false information about their boat’s destination. They served 10 months and were deported in August.
The ACLU lawsuit was brought under maritime law that would allow for damages for the trauma the men say they endured.
Colleen Long, The Associated Press