Georgia man allegedly traveled to St Croix with 4lbs of ganja to sell
United States Attorney Gretchen C.F. Shappert announced Wednesday, May 19, 2021, that Ra’Kheel Velasquez of Georgia was arrested May 14, 2021, on a warrant signed by District Court Magistrate Judge George W. Cannon, Jr for the charges of possession of a controlled substance with the intent to distribute and possession of marijuana with intent to distribute by person on board aircraft.
According to court documents, Velasquez, age 23, is accused of traveling on March 10, 2021, to St Croix, US Virgin Islands (USVI) from Georgia with approximately four pounds of marijuana in his luggage.
Per the affidavit in support of criminal complaint, Homeland Security Investigations Special Agents were contacted March 10, 2021, by Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers regarding an in inbound airline passenger in possession of approximately four pounds of marijuana at the Henry E. Rohlsen Airport. CBP officers conducted a physical examination of a large red suitcase, later claimed by Velasquez, and discovered suspected marijuana which weighed approximately 1.76 kilograms. The suspected marijuana was field-tested by CBP officers and yielded a positive result for marijuana.
According to court documents, Velasquez informed CBP that he had about four pounds of marijuana in the bag, which he brought from Atlanta and planned to sell on St Croix, since he heard that the marijuana prices were higher in the USVI. In addition, agents said Velasquez told them he traveled to St Croix to attend a family member’s funeral.
An initial appearance and bond hearing occurred on Saturday, May 15, 2021, with a preliminary hearing to be scheduled by the court.
The case is being investigated by US Customs and Border Protection and Homeland Security Investigations. It is being prosecuted by Assistant US Attorney Melissa P. Ortiz.
United States Attorney Gretchen C.F. Shappert reminds the public that a criminal complaint is merely a formal charging document and is not evidence of guilt. Every defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.