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No jail time for Washington man who helped migrants enter Canada illegally

Click to play video: 'Sentencing hearing for ‘Smuggler’s Inn’ owner' Sentencing hearing for ‘Smuggler’s Inn’ owner
WATCH: The owner of the 'Smuggler's Inn', located on the U.S. side of 0 Avenue, is in court for a sentencing hearing, after pleading guilty accepting cash to help people enter Canada illegally via his bed and breakfast – Dec 17, 2021

An American man who pleaded guilty to helping foreign nationals illegally enter Canada won’t see any further jail time.

Robert Boule, who owns the Smuggler’s Inn bed and breakfast in Blaine, Wash., was sentenced to time served and probation on Friday in a B.C. court.

Read more: Court documents outline details in case of U.S. man accused of helping migrants enter B.C.

Prosecutors had sought a sentence of 12 to 15 months in jail, while Boule’s defence had asked for a conditional sentence with time served, arguing he had a heart condition and suffered from dementia.

Click to play video: 'New information about owner of notorious Smuggler’s Inn' New information about owner of notorious Smuggler’s Inn
New information about owner of notorious Smuggler’s Inn – Oct 2, 2020

Boule was accused of helping seven migrants from Afghanistan and Syria cross into Canada from his property, which is located directly across from an unfenced area of the Canada-U.S. border, separated only by Surrey’s Zero Avenue.

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Read more: Smuggler’s Inn owner charged with trying to illegally sneak people into Canada

Crown said he picked the border jumpers up in Blaine or Seattle between May 2018 and March 2019, after they contacted him by phone or text, and alleged he charged between US$200 to US$700 for his services, according to court documents.

As a bail condition in 2019, Boule was forced to put signs up on his property warning people that crossing into Canada was illegal and was bound by a court order to report the identity of anyone seeking to cross illegally to Canadian authorities.

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