Photo: Brazilians Arrested for Human Smuggling
Two Brazilian nationals pleaded guilty yesterday in Miami to smuggling undocumented migrants to the United States for profit.
Juliana Rose Tome-Froes, 36, and her husband, Fabio Rodrigues Froes, 49, pleaded guilty in Florida of bringing and attempting to bring aliens to the U.S. for commercial advantage and private financial gain.
According to plea documents, from at least October 2008 until approximately September 2010, the defendants organized, operated and managed a human smuggling network that spanned from Brazil to France, England, The Bahamas and the United States.
The defendants met with undocumented migrants and negotiated forms of payment to be smuggled into the United States. Before the undocumented migrants departed Brazil, the defendants instructed them to act like tourists and explained that the itinerary through Europe would support a tourist cover story. In exchange for approximately $16,000, the couple, arranged air transportation from Brazil to Paris, then London and Nassau, Bahamas. Tome-Froes arranged the undocumented migrants’ lodging in Paris and Nassau, and then instructed them to fly to Freeport, Bahamas, where they waited for a boat to transport them to the United States. For the final leg into the United States, Tome-Froes coordinated with various individuals in South Florida to pilot a small boat to Freeport, which picked up the undocumented migrants and transported them to the United States.
At sentencing, scheduled for March 21, 2013, Juliana Tome-Froes faces a maximum penalty of 15 years in prison and a $250,000 fine, and Fabio Froes faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.