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Wednesday, 13 May, 1998, 11:12 GMT 12:12 UK
Miami police hunt for Haitians
Miami skyline
The Haitians' attempted to enter the US on a rickety old wooden boat
Police in Miami are searching for an estimated 75 Haitian illegal immigrants who managed to get away from a small boat that brought them to the city.

At least 100 were rounded up after many leapt from the old freighter that sailed them up the Miami river, evading immigration authorities.

Those who reached the shore ran through the streets, pursued by police and immigration officials.

Those who remain at large may have been helped by Haitian relatives who had been waiting nearby.

Others jumped into the water to avoid capture.

The immigrants' attempt to enter the United States was discovered when customs officials went to search the old wooden boat for drugs.

Those who were caught have been taken to a detention centre, and many will be sent back to Haiti within a few days.

The US coastguard said at least two people had drowned.

Police will resume their hunt for escapees at daylight, and divers will search the dirty river waters to try to discover whether any of the Haitians drowned.

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