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  1. #1
    Senior Member Scubayons's Avatar
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    Jul 2005

    Brutal Human Smugglers Nailed in Phoenix, Texas

    Brutal Human Smugglers Nailed in Phoenix, Texas
    Jim Kouri, CPP
    Jim Kouri, CPP is fifth vice-president of the National Association of Chiefs of Police and served in law enforcement for over 25 years. ??He writes for many police magazines such as Police Times. He's appeared as on-air commentator for over 100 TV and radio news and talk shows including Oprah, McLaughlin Report, CNN Headline News, MTV, Fox News, etc.?His book Assume The Position is available at Amazon.Com and can be ordered at local bookstores.

    By Jim Kouri, CPP
    September 9, 2005
    A 24-year-old Mexican national faces a possible sentence of life in prison after being found guilty for his role in a violent human smuggling scheme uncovered last year when agents from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement rescued three illegal immigrants who were being held hostage in a Phoenix area home.

    Marcial Avila was convicted August 24 of hostage taking, carrying and brandishing a firearm in a crime of violence, and three counts of alien smuggling. The hostage taking and firearms charges carry a maximum penalty of life in prison.

    Evidence introduced during Avila's trial showed that he and two other men received a group of three smuggled aliens at a æ?¹rop house?in west central Phoenix. When the aliens arrived, they were taken to a bedroom with plywood over the windows and ordered to remove their shoes. Witnesses testified that Avila and his accomplices threatened to kill the aliens and their relatives with an assault rifle if they did not pay their smuggling fees, which had been raised from the original $900 to $3,000 apiece.

    ICE agents and officers from the Phoenix Police Department rescued the hostages May 9, 2004. When the agents searched the house, they found the loaded semiautomatic rifle, additional ammunition, and notebooks containing the names of the hostages and their relatives' contact information.

    In Texas, three alien smugglers were sentenced to 14 years in prison in U.S. District Court for hostage taking, following an investigation by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).

    All of the suspects were arrested by the Houston Police Department (HPD) officers responding to a call alleging dozens of illegal aliens were being held at gunpoint at the car shop. ICE agents took custody from HPD of the defendants and the 36 smuggled aliens. Some of the smuggled aliens attempted to escape by crawling through the rafters inside the building, but ultimately fell through the ceiling into stores next door.

    During a two-week court trial, evidence presented by the government identified Victor Victoria-Magdaleno as the person who walked the smuggled illegal aliens through the brush near Roma, Texas, and then arranged to drive them to Houston and drop them off at GNW Car Stereo shop. He acted as a æ?µoss?and made sure the aliens didnæ*° leave the property.

    Armando Gaona, 30, a Mexican national, also was described by many of the illegal aliens as the boss, and as the individual responsible for beating a smuggled alien unconscious for failing to pay an additional $2,000 smuggling fee. William Calderon-Lopez, the manager at GNW Stereo Car Shop housed the illegal aliens at the store until relatives paid their smuggling fees. He also acted as a guard. Zabdiel Hernandez-Bonilla, 19, a Mexican national, was sentenced to 108 months in prison June 2004. He was also responsible for guarding the aliens and for keeping ledger books and lists of names. Rafael Rivas-Lopez, 29, from El Salvador, was also responsible for guarding the hostage aliens and coordinating the smuggling fee payments with the relatives of the smuggled aliens.

    Sources: Phoenix Police Department, Houston Police Department, Immigration and Customs Enforcement ... cleID=2310
    You can not be loyal to two nations, without being unfaithful to one. Scubayons 02/07/06

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Jan 1970
    Lonetree, CO
    in west central Phoenix.
    Hummm, this is where I grew up. Must be Maryvale.
    "I can because I will, I will because I can" ME

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