Regina man gets 6 months for Canada-U.S. human smuggling ring
Nigerian citizens and asylum seekers transported to Canada from U.S. in April
A Regina man who pleaded guilty to a charge related to a Canada-U.S. human smuggling ring has been sentenced to six months in prison.
Victor Omoruyi was arrested and charged for taking part in transporting nine Nigerian citizens and asylum seekers to the Canadian border from the United States on April 14.
In June, he pleaded guilty to the charge of harbouring and transporting an alien.
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U.S. District Judge Ralph Erickson said during Wednesday's sentencing hearing in Fargo, N.D., that Omoruyi deserves prison time because it was a for-profit scheme to unlawfully move people across the border.
Omoruyi's already served four months in prison. His lawyer, David Dusek, was asking for a sentence of the same length.
The shorter sentence would have allowed Omoruyi to immediately return home to Canada, if given credit for time served. A plea agreement called for six months.
"If the judge wants him to do the six months, he has to do the rest of the time, and then he'll be allowed to go back," Dusek said before the sentencing.
Omoruyi's wife, Michelle Omoruyi, is also facing charges after nine people were found in her vehicle on the Canadian side of the border.
She has been charged with one count of human smuggling under the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act, and one count of conspiracy to commit human smuggling.
Her next court appearance is Aug. 14 in Estevan, Sask.
with files from The Associated Press