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  1. #1
    Moderator Beezer's Avatar
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    Apr 2016

    El Paso, Juárez migrant smugglers sentenced to prison after Lower Valley hostage resc

    El Paso, Juárez migrant smugglers sentenced to prison after Lower Valley hostage rescue

    Daniel Borunda, El Paso Times
    Thu, February 23, 2023 at 10:53 AM EST

    Two convicted members of an El Paso human smuggling group recently were sentenced in a hostage-taking case in which a butcher knife was used to threaten to kill migrants if their families didn't pay for their release, officials said.

    Enrique "Kike" Quiroz Jr., 50, of El Paso, and Carlos "Negro" Villa Miranda, 42, of Juárez, were each sentenced in U.S. District Court in El Paso last week on charges of bringing-and-harboring undocumented migrants, according to court documents.

    Quiroz was sentenced to 16 years plus eight months in federal prison, while Villa Miranda was given 12 years in prison, documents stated.

    "These sentences show the grave consequences human smugglers face when they exploit people in such a ruthless way," said Special Agent in Charge Francisco B. Burrola of the U.S. Homeland Security Investigations El Paso Division.

    Hostages in the Lower Valley

    On Dec. 2, 2020, Homeland Security Investigations was contacted by two callers who said that their family members were being held against their will at unknown locations in El Paso and Las Cruces. The migrants' relatives had "received phone calls informing their family members would be murdered if they did not provide money in exchange for their release," a criminal complaint stated.

    HSI agents that night traced the phone signals in the extortion calls to an apartment on Emerson Street in the North Loop area of El Paso's Lower Valley, the complaint stated.

    In the apartment, HSI agents found Quiroz and eight undocumented migrants locked inside a bedroom. The migrants were from undisclosed Latin American countries, documents stated.

    Immigration:New Biden administration proposal seeks to limit access for asylum seekers at southern border

    Quiroz allegedly told HSI agents that he was getting paid to hide, feed and detain the migrants in his apartment before they could be smuggled to other parts of the United States.

    Investigators learned that Quiroz worked in a smuggling group with a man named "Carlos" (Villa Miranda), also known as "Negro," who would stash migrants at a trailer home in Las Cruces and also would transport migrants to Quiroz's home, documents stated.

    A U.S. Department of Homeland Security officer observes migrants on the bank of the Rio Grande as hundreds of migrants crossed hoping to seek asylum last December in El Paso.

    Villa Miranda was later arrested after he fled during an inspection at the U.S. Border Patrol checkpoint on Interstate 10 near Las Cruces, the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Western District of Texas said in a statement.

    On at least one occasion, Villa Miranda brandished a butcher knife and threatened to kill the migrants if their families didn't pay, prosecutors said.

    More:FBI rescues migrants held hostage, arrests El Paso kidnapping suspects in Sunset Heights

    After getting paid to cross migrants over the U.S. border, smugglers will then sometimes hold migrants hostage and demand greater amounts of money from the migrants' families, border law enforcement officials have said.

    "These human smuggling organizations are incredibly dangerous and prove that they value their pursuit of money and power through unlawful means far more than the lives of their trafficking victims," said U.S. Attorney Jaime Esparza of the Western District of Texas.

    "The agents with the Department of Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) did an outstanding job tracking down these two criminals and putting a stop to their roles as human smugglers," Esparza said in a statement.

    Others sentenced in smuggling case

    Federal court documents show that at least three others were convicted and sentenced in connection with the case last year.

    Martha Fielding and Antonia Martinez were each sentenced in September on federal charges of ransom and bringing-and-harboring undocumented migrants. Fielding was given more than six years in prison. Martinez received a prison sentence of more than three years.

    Angel Gabriel Garcia-De Leon, alias “24,” was sentenced to five years in prison on charges of bringing-and-harboring migrants and smuggling of goods, records stated.

    More:Under emergency declaration, El Paso issued $1.5 million migrant shelter contract to criticized provider

    This article originally appeared on El Paso Times: El Paso, Juárez migrant smugglers sentenced after hostages rescued



  2. #2
    Moderator Beezer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Great, over $30 grand a year of OUR money to incarcerate these animals. Just put them down and out of our misery. There are thousands of these terrorists destroying our countries, our peace, and our prosperity. This should not be tolerated by any means!

    Deport every one of those illegal aliens who were human smuggled too! Get them out of here! They are destroying our country and bankrupting us with their crimes. They are not innocent either!


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