SAN JUAN – U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Safety Investigations (HSI), along side U.S. Customs and Border Safety (CBP), returned 12 historical artifacts to the Dominican Republic throughout a repatriation ceremony, held on the Institute of Puerto Rican Tradition in San Juan on Thursday.
HSI San Juan Particular Agent in Cost, Ivan Arvelo, returned the artifacts to the Honorable Opinio Diaz, Dominican Republic Consul in Puerto Rico on behalf of the U.S. authorities.
“Investigating Cultural Property, Artwork and Antiquities is a crucial a part of the HSI mission,” mentioned Ivan Arvelo, HSI San Juan Particular Agent in Cost. “The return of those artifacts to our brothers and sisters from the Dominican Republic are important for the continued partnership between the 2 governments.”
On account of a cultural property investigation spanning throughout three separate instances, regulation enforcement grew to become conscious of artifacts smuggled into San Juan from Santo Domingo in December 2013 when a neighborhood collector bought it from an internet public sale home. There have been 28 suspected Pre-Columbian stones and one piece of wood artwork recognized after a CBP inspection of an incoming ferry boat. Specialists from the Puerto Rico Archeological Division indicated that among the artifacts belonged to the Taino Indian tradition and have been thought-about archaeological objects.
“We respect HSI ongoing efforts to repatriate twelve Pre-Columbian artifacts to my Nation,” mentioned Dominican Republic Consul Opinio Diaz. “This stage of collaboration strengthens the friendship and collaboration between each nations.”
“We’re completely satisfied to witness this return of archaeological items to our brother nation, the Dominican Republic. The archaeological items are going again to their hometown. This represents an vital contribution to its historical past and identification. Now, there might be new materials that may be researched and studied to higher perceive the previous. The Archeology program of the Institute of Puerto Rican Tradition collaborated within the certification course of of those items, reaffirming our dedication to cultural collaboration with our Dominican brothers,” mentioned Carlos Ruiz, Government Director of the Institute of Puerto Rican Tradition.
“I’m pleased with the CBP Officers that have been capable of establish these priceless artifacts. It’s our privilege to return these historic treasures to the Dominican Republic,” indicated Gregory Alvarez, Director of Area Operations for CBP in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. “We’ll proceed working with our state and federal companions to make sure we rescue most of these historic objects from the arms of those that revenue on the theft of cultural property.”
HSI works intently with overseas governments to conduct joint investigations and is dedicated to pursuing a method to fight transnational organized crime associated to the illicit trafficking of cultural artifacts by concentrating on high-priority organizations and strengthening worldwide regulation enforcement partnerships. Since 2007, HSI has repatriated greater than 15,000 objects to over 40 nations and establishments.
Members of the general public who’ve details about the illicit distribution of cultural property, in addition to the unlawful trafficking of art work, are urged to name the toll-free tip line at 1-866-DHS-2-ICE or to finish the online tip form.
HSI is a directorate of ICE and the principal investigative arm of the U.S. Division of Homeland Safety (DHS), accountable for investigating transnational crime and threats, particularly these felony organizations that exploit the worldwide infrastructure by means of which worldwide commerce, journey, and finance transfer.
HSI’s workforce of over 10,400 staff consists of greater than 7,100 particular brokers assigned to 220 cities all through the USA and 80 abroad places in 53 nations. HSI’s worldwide presence represents DHS’s largest investigative regulation enforcement presence overseas and one of many largest international footprints in U.S. regulation enforcement.