Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has deported an illegal immigrant who is wanted for murder in Mexico and had been living illegally in the U.S. despite having been stopped at the border more than half a dozen times previously.
Juan Martinez Merida, a Mexican illegal immigrant, was deported in October, authorities said in a recent press release.
He had previously been detained at least seven times at the border, and had been allowed to depart voluntarily — where an illegal immigrant is allowed to leave the country by themselves and therefore avoid being given a final order of removal. He then escaped into the country as a got-away at an unknown time, according to ICE.
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He was arrested in August by ICE’s branch in Philadelphia, and was charged with inadmissibility. Last month an immigration judge ordered his removal to Mexico, since there is an active warrant for his arrest.
In a statement, ICE Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) said Merida was wanted for murder in Mexico.
ERO Philadelphia is dedicated to ensuring that individuals seeking to evade justice in their home countries are removed from our communities and returned home to face justice,” ERO Philadelphia Field Office Director Cammilla Wamsley said in a statement.
It’s the latest instance of a criminal wanted in other countries for serious crimes who has escaped into the U.S. via the southern border.
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Fox reported this week that ICE arrested an illegal immigrant Brazilian fugitive – who is wanted in his home country for failing to serve a prison sentence for raping a 5-year-old child — in Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts.
ICE said the Brazilian, identified as 37-year-old Saulo Cardona Ferreira, had received “multiple criminal convictions” in Brazil in 2019 for raping the child and had been sentenced to 14 years in prison, but he had fled the country. The town of Sorriso, Mato Grosso, had issued a warrant for his arrest.
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There were more than 600,000 gotaways last fiscal year, while in the new fiscal year agents have recorded more than 1,000 got-aways each day.