Mexican man pleads guilty to abandoning injured immigrant who later died

Posted: Wednesday,
September 2, 2015 3:19 pm


McALLEN — A 31-year-old Mexican man pleaded guilty Wednesday to charges related to the death of a woman he was accused of smuggling near the Pharr-Reynosa International Bridge last year, prosecutors said.

Victor Manuel Moreno-Ruiz went before U.S. District Judge Micaela Alvarez and admitted he served as a foot guide responsible for smuggling a group of illegal crossers into the United States on Aug. 4, 2014, a news release states.

Moreno instructed the group how to walk along the side of the bridge and how to scale down at the Pharr Port of Entry, the release states.

In the process of crossing the bridge, a female he was guiding fell off and suffered severe injuries. Moreno admitted he left the injured woman behind and continued to smuggle the remaining members of the group, prosecutors said.
The next day, law enforcement officers discovered the body of the woman. An autopsy revealed that she had died as a result of blunt force trauma due to a fall.

Moreno is scheduled for a sentencing hearing on Nov. 12, where he faces up to life in prison and a $250,000 fine.