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U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Update for June, 2008

June 16, 2008
ICE

ICE fugitive operations team arrest 42 in Rhode Island

PROVIDENCE, RI - U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) arrested 42 immigration fugitives and immigration violators during a law enforcement operation carried out by deportation officers assigned to the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Rhode Island Fugitive Operations Team............MORE
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MS-13 Members charged with federal racketeering charges
WASHINGTON, DC - Four members of MS-13, a notorious and violent Hispanic gang, have been charged by a federal grand jury in a 19-count indictment with conspiracy to commit violent crimes in aid of racketeering, including murder, and various firearms violations within the District of Columbia between 2006 and 2007, U.S. Attorney Jeffrey A. Taylor, Mark X. McGraw, Special Agent in Charge, U. S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Washington Field Office, and Metropolitan Police Department (MPD) Chief Cathy L. Lanier, announced today.

The alleged leaders of the conspiracy, William Cordova, 23, also known as "Centinella" or "Mario," and Jose Gutierrez, 19, also known as "Astuto" or "Marco," are also charged with maiming in aid of racketeering and threats to commit crimes of violence in aid of racketeering. Cordova, Gutierrez and the remaining defendants, William Osorio-Rivas, 20, also known as "Macklin," and Melvin Sorto, 21, also known as "Killer" or "Fantasma," are further charged with numerous overt acts in furtherance of the conspiracy that culminated in the murder of Edwin Ventura, on April 22, 2007.

The indictment was returned under seal on June 10, 2008, and unsealed today following..MORE
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ICE launches Trade Transparency Unit in Mexico City as part of bi-lateral cooperation with Mexico Customs
ICE opens Mexico City TTU to combat and eliminate trade-based money laundering systems

MEXICO CITY - Julie L. Myers, Assistant Secretary of Homeland Security for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and Juan Jose Bravo Moisés, Administrator General for Mexico Customs, announced today the opening of a Trade Transparency Unit (TTU) in Mexico City as part of the ongoing bi-lateral cooperation between the two agencies.

ICE TTUs offer the ability to share information through cooperative, international investigative efforts. These investigations identify and eliminate trade-based money laundering systems, which facilitate the illegal movement of criminal proceeds across international borders. These illicit proceeds often fuel drug, human or contraband trafficking and terrorism.

"The ill-gained profits funneled across our international borders will lead the TTU to those responsible for transnational criminal activity," said Myers. "Mexico's cooperation has proven unprecedented and is the largest such initiative ICE has undertaken in our efforts to combat the rise in complex and sophisticated financial and trade crimes around the world."...........MORE
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More than 100 gang members and associates nabbed following ICE-led operation in Georgia
ICE works with local officers to make arrests

ATLANTA – More than 100 gang members and associates were arrested as a result of a state-wide initiative in Georgia led by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) special agents. 

The success of the operation dubbed “Community Shield” was as a result of a collaborative effort between multiple law enforcement agencies at the local, state and federal level. The operation, which culminated Saturday, targeted gang members living in the Atlanta metro area, Dalton, Savannah, and Albany.

Of those arrested, 122 were gang members and five were gang associates. Seven cases will be presented for federal prosecution for illegal re-entry after deportation. Nineteen were arrested for state charges and/or had outstanding arrest warrants. Two weapons were also seized during the operation.

The leaders of La Raza, Westside Via Locos and Inland Empire were also nabbed. Among those arrested .....MORE 
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ICE, CBP and USCG team up to seize 567 kilograms of cocaine with a street value of approximately $17 million
Seizure part of Caribbean Border Interagency Group Initiative

MAYAGUEZ, Puerto Rico – U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) special agents, working jointly with other Caribbean Border Interagency Group (CBIG) law enforcement officers seized here yesterday approximately 567 kilograms of cocaine with a street value of more than $17 million and arrested a resident of Isabela, Puerto Rico, for importation of narcotics into the United States. 

Carlos Gonzalez-Mendez, 26, was traveling in a 24-foot fiberglass vessel 13 nautical miles northwest of Mona Island, Puerto Rico, when the crew of a U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) aircraft located the suspicious vessel as it transited the west coast of Puerto Rico from the Dominican Republic.

U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Key Largo was diverted and interdicted the drug carrying vessel approximately 12 nautical miles....MORE
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Chinese woman pleads guilty to conspiring to illegally export sensitive military components to China
ICE undercover probe foils global smuggling scheme

SAN DIEGO - A Chinese national who lives in Connecticut pleaded guilty yesterday to conspiring to illegally export military-grade accelerometers used in "smart bombs" and missiles from the United States to the People's Republic of China.

Qing Li, 39, of Stamford, Conn., admitted in U.S. District Court yesterday that she knowingly conspired with her co-conspirator to buy and export the piezoresistive accelerometers to a customer described in court papers as a "special" scientific agency in China......MORE
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Virginia Corporation sentenced for unlawful export of sensitive electronic components to China

ALEXANDRIA, Va. - WaveLab, Inc., of Reston, Va., was sentenced today to one year of supervised probation and a $15,000 fine, together with $85,000 in forfeiture previously ordered, for the unlawful export of electronic components to the People's Republic of China. The items were listed on the Commerce Control List for national security reasons because of their potential military uses.

Chuck Rosenberg, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia; Darryl W. Jackson, Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Export Enforcement; and, Mark X. McGraw, Acting Special Agent in Charge, ICE, Washington Field Office, made the announcement after sentencing by United States District Judge T.S. Ellis, III. WaveLab pled guilty to the offense on March 7, 2008.  This case was investigated by ICE, the U.S. Department of Commerce, and Bureau of Industry and Security.
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SOURCE: ICE
Created in March 2003, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) is the largest investigative branch of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). The agency was created after 9/11, by combining the law enforcement arms of the former Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) and the former U.S. Customs Service, to more effectively enforce our immigration and customs laws and to protect the United States against terrorist attacks. ICE does this by targeting illegal immigrants: the people, money and materials that support terrorism and other criminal activities. ICE is a key component of the DHS “layered defense” approach to protecting the nation. 

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