Dominican drug smuggler, 23 gave birth in prison on Malta
woman standing trial for drug trafficking and facing up to a maximum of life imprisonment yesterday told jurors that she had given birth behind bars and the child stayed with her in prison for a year.

Sugeidy Castillo, 23, from the Dominican Republic, said she had no idea that she was pregnant before coming to Malta on July 13, 2009.

The child is now living with her grandmother in Spain.

Ms Castillo was caught carrying a bag which contained almost one kilogram of heroin concealed on the side of the luggage.

She is pleading not guilty to importing, conspiring to import and being in possession of the drug in circumstances which denote it was not for her exclusive use.

Living in Spain and desperately short of money, she took an opportunity to prostitute herself in Amsterdam after a woman, whom she knew as Paola, had asked her if she would do it.

She had met Paola in a bar named the El Gato in Barcelona. She was not a friend but rather an acquaintance and she had seen her regularly in the bar for around three months.

Paola arranged for her to fly to Amsterdam and to meet two men who would then explain everything to her, Ms Castillo said.

On arrival she was taken to a house and met two women and another man who told her there were no more jobs for prostitutes and asked if she would like to go to Malta where people paid €1,000 to sleep with a prostitute.

Believing them, she accepted but they noticed that she did not have enough clothing for the two-week stay, she said. They bought her some more clothes and gave her a bigger bag which she packed herself.

In cross examination, she said she never knew she was pregnant and only found out while in prison. She insisted that had she known she was pregnant she would have never have come to Malta.

Taking the witness stand, Police Sergeant Adrian Sciberras said that on the day in question he was stationed at the airport and was told to observe passengers arriving and to give particular attention to the flight from Brussels.

He said the police had a profile of who to look out for, such as previous destinations travelled to and nationality, and the accused was flagged up.

Suspicions were immediately raised by her bag because the same brand of luggage, Vega, had twice been intercepted previously by Customs and drugs were found in similar circumstances.

In the X-ray machine, pills could also be seen hidden in the false bottom of the luggage next to the heroin, the sergeant said. The pills were not an illegal substance.

Lawyer Edward Gatt is appearing as defence counsel.




Jury finds Dominican woman guilty of importing drugs.

A 23-year-old woman from the Dominican Republic was this evening found guilty of importing drugs.

With seven out of nine votes, a jury found Sugeidy Castillo guilty of importing the drugs in July 2009.

Ms Castillo was caught carrying a bag which contained almost one kilogramme of heroin concealed on the side of the luggage.

With a unanimous vote, the jury found the Ms Castillo guilty of conspiring to import and of being in possession of the drug in circumstances which denoted it was not for her exclusive use.

23-year-old Dominican mother of two Sugeidy Castillo was  today after she was convicted by a jury yesterday of havingbrought drugs to Malta. 

Jailed for 14 and a half years, the sentence was delivered by Justice Lawrence Quintano after a three-day trial.




Dominican Watchdog Note: Shows Dominicans has become world travellers@!

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