Illegal garage in French Quarter: the manager wants to be a "taxpayer"

The owner of the garage dismantled last November appeared before the Criminal Court of Saint Martin.

After several years of completely illegal activity, the garage of Mr. T. was dismantled by the gendarmes in December 2016. The operation was conducted as part of the COTAF, the Territorial Anti-Fraud Committee. Mr. T. performed his profession without declaring it and without respecting environmental standards. For example, there was no electricity and no oil was collected. Car carcasses were piled up in a field. When the authorities cite the name of SXM Verde, only company of the French side to be able to deal with waste oil and other waste, the name does not remind him anything.

Mr. T. was summoned by justice on Thursday, March 16. He came to the court with his wife. Before the court, he had not much to say, except for his willingness to put himself in order. Wearing gray pants, a purple shirt and a belt which the loop was a revolver, he explained that, when he opened his garage he had followed a three-month training to declare himself and due to lack of time, he had not been able to do it. "Today, the training is one week, then I will follow it," he said. Several times, he said that he wanted to be "a tax payer", now certainly thinking that his statements would reassure the Court. And to prove it, he brought his acknowledgment of the request for the creation of an individual company at the CFE of the Chamber of Commerce (CCISM), a document dated the day before the hearing.

The Prosecution requested a conditional sentence of eight months of imprisonment, a fine of EUR 1,500, the confiscation of the seals, meaning his working tools and a ban on carrying out this activity for twelve months, “the time he has everything in order”.

After deliberation, the Court sentenced Mr. T. to six months suspended prison sentence, a fine of 1,500 euros including 500 assorted of the conditional sentence. However, a restitution of the seals was ordered.

As part of the COTAF, the gendarmes had also dismantled the illegal garage for the approval process. The owner will be tried on Thursday, March 30 by the Criminal Court of Saint-Martin. (Photo credit: gendarmerie of Saint-Martin)


Estelle Gasnet