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  1. #1
    Administrator ALIPAC's Avatar
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    Nov 2004
    Gheen, Minnesota, United States

    illegal immigrant accused of rape murder not deported before

    GAINESVILLE --- A man accused of kidnapping, molesting and strangling a 4-year-old girl previously had been under investigation for sexually abusing two children, officials said...
    illegal immigrant, crimes, laws, security, immigration, aliens

    Associated Press

    Hall County Sheriff's Sgt. James Evans testified Friday during the preliminary hearing for 24-year-old Cornelio Rivera Zamites that the suspect had been under investigation for several years by Hall County authorities after two 12-year-old girls accused him of sexual abuse. One of those girls is now 16 years old, he said.

    At the hearing, Hall County Chief Magistrate Margaret Gregory ruled that prosecutors had sufficient DNA evidence to continue holding Zamites on murder, kidnapping and child molestation charges in the death of Esmerelda Nava.

    Evans testified that Zamites told police that he carried the girl with one arm and muffled Esmerelda's cries for her daddy with his other hand ''until she stopped moving.''

    The girl disappeared June 25 while her father visited Zamites' single-wide trailer.

    She had been waiting in the family's car with her mother.

    The girl left the vehicle to use a neighbor's bathroom, according to testimony. She left the neighbor's trailer minutes later, but never returned to her family's car.

    Police and volunteers scouring the woods behind Zamites' home found the girl's tennis shoe and what they believed was Zamites' red bandanna.

    The next morning the girl's body was found with her white blouse pulled up to her chest and her pants dragged down to her ankles.

    On Friday, Zamites cast his eyes downward at the table throughout the hearing as a court reporter translated the proceedings into Spanish for him.

    Defense attorney Josh Moore, of the Georgia Capital Defender's Office, noted that no witnesses had seen Zamites with the 4-year-old.

    It took an intense four-day manhunt before police captured Zamites in this North Georgia town, where the child's death has unsettled the city's fast growing Hispanic population and its rural white establishment.

    A dozen officers milled around the courtroom, scanning the wooden pews for metal devices before letting anyone inside. Each visitor entering the courtroom was screened for a second time by a metal detector, a rare practice in Georgia courthouses.

    Before the hearing began, journalists were ordered to leave the court by a sheriff's deputy while the general public still moved freely in and out of the courtroom.

    Reporters were allowed to return about an hour later after media lawyers called the magistrate and reminded her that Georgia caselaw opens criminal proceedings to the public. ''This is a major case,'' Gregory said. ''We certainly don't want it in any way subjected to unwanted publicity. But I don't see an overriding need to close the proceedings.''
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  2. #2
    Senior Member Brian503a's Avatar
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    May 2005
    California or ground zero of the invasion
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    Monday, May 8, 2006

    Murder suspect may have returned after deportation

    From staff reports


    The suspect who is perhaps Hall County's most notorious illegal immigrant of the past year also is being represented by a public defender.

    Caught after a four-day manhunt in June, Cornelio Rivera Zamites, 24, is charged with kidnapping, molesting and murdering 4-year-old Esmerelda Nava in a wooded area behind her family's home off A.L. Mangum Road.

    Nava's body was found June 26. Authorities initially feared Zamites had fled the country for his home in Vera Cruz, Mexico. A tip, however, led to the suspect's capture.

    Authorities also believe that Zamites, who worked as a day laborer in Hall, had returned to the country after being deported in June 2003 following an arrest in Gainesville.

    Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials said last year they did deport a Cornelio Rivera Zamites of Gainesville in 2003, but were not certain if it was the same person as the man arrested for Nava's murder.

    ICE spokesman Temple Black could not immediately verify last week if the man deported in 2003 was the same man.

    At the time of Zamites' capture, Hall County Sheriff Steve Cronic said the scenario of a deportation and subsequent return seems likely.

    "If you don't do anything about the borders, it's kind of like an all-expense-paid trip home to see loved ones before they come back," Cronic said in June.

    Georgia's new immigration law would do little to stop such action by illegal immigrants who have been deported.

    Zamites' case remains open, and his next court date could not be determined last week. Officials with the District Attorney's office for the Northeast Georgia Judicial Circuit could not be reached.

    Zamites never left Hall after he was sought for murder, but several other suspects are believed to have fled.

    Four of Hall County's most wanted, all of whom face murder charges, are foreign born and may have left the country, according to the Hall County Sheriff's Office.

    Among them is Son Van Nguyen, 49, whose last known address was 2163 Green Crest Drive in Gainesville.

    Nguyen is charged with the shooting deaths of Vien Hong Ngo and Thanh Phuong Thi Ngo during Thanksgiving 2003. Their bodies were found two days after the slayings, leaving the suspect plenty of time to flee, authorities said.

    Contact:, (770) 718-3401

    Originally published Monday, May 8, 2006
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  3. #3
    Senior Member Brian503a's Avatar
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    May 2005
    California or ground zero of the invasion
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    DA seeks death in girl's slaying
    Former laborer charged with killing 4-year-old child in '05

    The Times


    The Northeastern Judicial Circuit District Attorney's Office will seek the death penalty against a Gainesville man accused of molesting and strangling a 4-year-old girl to death last year, according to court documents released Friday.

    District Attorney Lee Darragh made the decision to seek the death penalty against Cornelio Rivera Zamites in a three-page notice of intent filed June 9.

    Zamites, 25, a former laborer in Hall County, is charged with killing 4-year-old Esmerelda Nava on June 25, 2005, near his home on Pratt Reece Road.

    The state's request to seek the death penalty against Zamites is based on his being charged with engaging in the commission of two capital felonies, rape and kidnapping with bodily injury, while committing murder, according to the court document.

    "The offense... was outrageously and wantonly vile, horrible and inhuman in that it involved torture and depravity of mind," Darragh said in the death penalty request.

    Reached Friday for comment, Darragh said "it would not be appropriate for me to comment on the facts" of a pending case.

    "I'll let the documents speak for themselves," he said.

    The death penalty request is scheduled in trial court for a first proceeding under unified appeal and could be heard within the next few weeks, Darragh said.

    Zamites was arrested after a national four-day manhunt. He was captured in a wooded area near his home by Georgia State Patrol troopers after authorities feared he had fled to Mexico. He also is being held on a charge of violating immigration laws, according to court documents.

    Zamites has been held in the Hall County Detention Center without bond since his arrest.

    "We support the district attorney's office in their decision (to seek the death penalty)," Hall County Sheriff's Maj. Jeff Strickland said. "(The slaying) was one of the most serious crimes against a child in Hall in some time."

    Officials with the Georgia Capitol Defender's Office and the Hall County Public Defender's Office could not be reached for comment Friday.

    An investigator with the Hall County Sheriff's Office testified last July that Zamites told police he carried Nava with one arm and muffled her cries for her father with his other hand "until she stopped moving."

    Defense attorney Josh Moore of the Georgia Capital Defender's Office noted that no witnesses had seen Zamites with the 4-year-old. Moore, along with Bradford Morris of the Hall County Public Defender's Office, represented Zamites in his first two court appearances.

    The death penalty request against Zamites is the third pending death penalty case in Hall County.

    Contact:, (770) 718-3432

    Originally published Saturday, June 17, 2006
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  4. #4
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    May 2006

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