(TRINIDAD EXPRESS) – A 32-year-old flight attendant has been fined $55,000 on three charges in connection with attempting to illegally import US$39,054.
Venosh Maraj, of St Augustine, was charged with three offences: the import of prohibited goods—a quantity of cash at US$39,054; importing said cash in a manner to deceive Customs and Excise officials; and failing to declare the said cash.
He pleaded guilty to the offences when the matter was called before Magistrate Gloria Jasmath in the Arima Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday.
Maraj was represented by attorneys Reynold Waldropt and Jeron Joseph.
After a plea of mitigation was submitted on Maraj’s behalf, he was fined $15,000, or default serve 18 months hard labour on the first charge; $25,000 or three years hard labour on the second and $15,000, or 18 months hard labour the third charge.
Maraj was given a month to pay all three fines.
Maraj, who has been a flight attendant with Caribbean ¬Airlines for five years, was arrested at Piarco International Airport on August 13.
He was on a Caribbean Airlines flight which had left New York, USA, flown to Georgetown, Guyana, and then to Trinidad.
He was held with the money when trying to leave Customs at the Piarco International Airport.