Three deported for trying to sell jet engines to Iran

Each served two years in prison before return to Colombia

By Wayne K. Roustan, Sun Sentinel7:18 p.m. EST, January 29, 2013

Three Colombian nationals were deported on Monday after serving two years in prison for conspiring to ship F-5 fighter jet engines to Iran, according to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials.

Diego Echeverri-Gutierrez, 44, Carlos Alfredo Pantoja-Coral, 58, and Pantoja-Coral's wife, Amparo Echeverri-Valdes, 56, all of Bogota, Colombia, were arrested in March 2011. They were convicted later that year of conspiracy to fraudulently attempt to export goods from the U.S. to Iran, following a probe by Homeland Security Investigation agents.

After serving prison time, they were eligible for deportation as aliens who broke laws banning the export of goods, technology or sensitive information from the United States, officials said.

All three were escorted by Enforcement and Removal Operations officers on a Miami charter flight and were turned over to Colombian law enforcement authorities upon arrival in Bogota, agents said.

Since Oct. 1, 2009, the U.S. has returned more than 566 foreign fugitives to their native countries for serious crimes, including kidnapping, rape and murder, officials said.,0,6044234.story?track=rss