PHILIPSBURG--The Prosecutor’s Office presented in the Court of First Instance on Wednesday a confiscation order against Casa Blanca N.V. and three suspects convicted in the Papagaai investigation.
These individuals and private entity were convicted for their role in the trafficking of women at Casa Blanca. Both the Court of First Instance and the Joint Court of Justice made this decision in 2017. The legal entity Casablanca N.V. was also convicted for tax offences.
The prosecutor requested a confiscation order of NAf. 15 million divided among the suspects and called the reasoning behind the order to deprive those convicted from “obtaining illegal profits”.
“After all, crime should not pay,” reiterated the prosecutor on Wednesday. The claim currently amounts to NAf. 15,170,583.40.
“In order to determine the exact amount of illegally obtained profits, the Public Prosecution Service made a request to the judge, during the pre-trial hearing, to extend the investigating period indefinitely. The court accepted the proposal and held the case open for an indefinite period, stated the Prosecutor’s Office in a press release.
Managing director Augusto T.M. Reiph and his sister, assistant manager Jessica P. Reiph, were both sentenced to two years, one of which was suspended, on two years’ probation.
Casa Blanca’s manager and assistant manager were each ordered to pay a fine of NAf. 15,000 for non-payment of turnover and profit taxes. Jessica Reiph was also convicted of illegal firearm possession.
The former operator of now-defunct Hypnotic Hotel and Entertainment N.V. in Sucker Garden and former Casa Blanca secretary Mayline J. Peterson was sentenced on February 7, 2018, to 24 months, 12 of which were suspended, on two years’ probation, for the trafficking and exploitation of a number of women working in these two establishments.
The lesser court found her guilty of trafficking women and of illegally employing 27 women from Venezuela, Colombia and the Dominican Republic at Hypnotic between January 1 and October 24, 2016. She was also found guilty of trafficking and exploiting women at Casa Blanca, where she worked as a secretary from February 1, 2010, to January 26, 2015, but she was acquitted of depriving sex workers involved of their liberty.