I.C.E. News Release




ICE deports 2 Central American suspects wanted in home countries for murder

LOS ANGELES — Two foreign national homicide suspects captured in Los Angeles, including a Mara Salvatrucha (MS-13) gang member wanted in his native El Salvador for killing and beheading a woman and a Guatemalan man wanted for a quadruple murder, were repatriated this week by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to face the outstanding criminal charges.

Carlos Ivan Rivas-Castro, 22, was removed to El Salvador Wednesday aboard a charter flight coordinated by ICE’s Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) Air Operations Unit.

Upon arrival, ERO officers turned the fugitive over to representatives from the Salvadoran national police and Interpol.

Rivas-Castro, a documented MS-13 gang member, is wanted in El Salvador for aggravated homicide and criminal association.

Salvadoran authorities allege Rivas-Castro and several other MS-13 members shot, stabbed and then decapitated a female MS-13 member they believed informed on the gang. The murder occurred in the community of Jucuapa in eastern El Salvador in September 2011. The Salvadoran arrest warrant charging Rivas-Castro with the murder was issued nine months later.

After being alerted about the outstanding warrant by Interpol, Los Angeles-based officers with ERO’s Fugitive Alien Removal Team and the U.S. Marshals Service located and arrested Rivas-Castro in downtown Los Angeles Aug. 22, 2013. He remained in custody at ICE’s contract detention facility in Adelanto pending a decision on his case by the immigration courts. In March 2014, an immigration judge ordered Rivas-Castro removed from the U.S., but he appealed the decision. In August, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals dismissed Rivas-Castro’s petition seeking a review of his case, paving the way for this week’s removal.

“The allegations in this case are shocking and barbaric,” said David Jennings, field office director for ERO Los Angeles. “But it’s reassuring to know this suspect will now be held to answer for his crimes. For its part, ICE will continue to work closely with foreign law enforcement to promote public safety and hold dangerous offenders accountable for their actions – no matter where they commit their crimes.”

The second foreign national murder suspect, Erasmo Vinicio Rosa-Mejia, 20, was repatriated to Guatemala Tuesday aboard a charter flight coordinated by ERO’s Air Operations Unit. Upon arriving in Guatemala City, ERO officers turned the fugitive over to awaiting representatives from the Guatemalan National Civil Police. Rosa-Mejia is wanted in Guatemala for his role in the armed robbery of a shop in Olopa in October 2012 that left four people dead and a fifth seriously wounded. ICE officers and members of the U.S. Marshals Fugitive Task Force took Rosa-Mejia into custody in Pasadena July 25 without incident. In September, an immigration judge ordered the former fugitive deported, clearing the way for his repatriation this week.

Since Oct. 1, 2009, ERO has removed more than 700 foreign fugitives from the United States who were being sought in their native countries for serious crimes, including kidnapping, rape and murder.

ERO works with ICE’s Office of International Operations, foreign consular offices in the United States, and Interpol to identify foreign fugitives illegally present in the country.