Thrice-Deported Illegal Immigrant Accused Of Smuggling People, Drugs, .50 Caliber Ammo Across Border

May 15, 2024 4:19 PM ET

A Mexican national repeatedly deported from the United States was allegedly the leader of a stash house that smuggled drugs, ammunition and migrants across the southern border.

A federal grand jury in Arizona handed down a 10-count
indictment, first reported by Border Report, earlier this month against Ambrocio Ruiz-Angulo. Ruiz-Angulo is charged with conspiracy to smuggle goods out of the U.S., possession of a firearm by an illegal immigrant, and possession with intent to distribute heroin, cocaine, methamphetamine and fentanyl.

Law enforcement officials were led to Ruiz-Angulo after catching a woman attempting to drive 2,200 rounds of .50-caliber bullets past a Customs and Border Protection (CBP) port of entry into Mexico earlier this year.

CBP officers in January stopped a vehicle trying to leave the U.S. through the Mariposa port of entry in Nogales, Arizona, according to a criminal complaint reviewed by the Daily Caller News Foundation. Upon inspection of the vehicle, officers discovered boxes of .50-caliber ammunition typically used for machine guns and sniper rifles.

CBP posted an image on X of ammo seized on January 20 and described them as “armor-piercing and incendiary.”

Port Director Michael W. Humphries

1/20: CBP officers working outbound operations at the Nogales POE seized 2200 rounds of armor-piercing and incendiary .50 caliber ammunition before it entered Mexico.1/23: Officers working outbound ops seized 3 AK style rifles and 3 9mm handguns just before entering MX.

4:29 PM · Feb 7, 2024

The woman driving the vehicle cooperated with law enforcement — providing them a phone number for the person who hired her to smuggle the ammo and the location of the stash house where it had been kept.

Investigators tracked the phone number to Ruiz-Angulo and launched a surveillance operation.

Local police officers in El Mirage, Arizona, stopped a vehicle on April 11, in which they found 30 grams of cocaine, a stolen 9mm Smith and Wesson pistol, $6,000 cash and documents belonging to Ruiz-Angulo, according to court documents. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officers were notified and responded to investigate.

The driver of that vehicle allegedly told investigators that he ran “point” for Ruiz-Angulo while smuggling drugs and illegal immigrants from the U.S.-Mexico border to a stash house.

“Ruiz-Angulo admitted that he was the caretaker for the stash house where the driver had picked up the ammunition in January of 2024,” the criminal complaint read. “He also admitted to currently possessing additional ammunition in the stash house that was to be smuggled into Mexico.”

“Ruiz-Angulo stated that [the driver] was his partner and that they would work together to run loads of narcotics and undocumented non-citizen migrants to the stash house,” the complaint continued. “Ruiz-Angulo stated that he previously smuggled undocumented non-citizen migrants and narcotics before and as recently as two days ago.”

The Mexican national is no stranger to federal law enforcement. He was previously deported from the U.S. in 2014, 2018 and 2023, and was sentenced to prison in 2018 for felony distribution of marijuana, according to Border Report.

ICE could not immediately respond to a request for comment from the DCNF.