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02/17/2011

10 plead guilty to immigration charges for illegal entry and re-entry after deportation

NEW BERN, N.C. - Ten individuals from Mexico and Guatemala pleaded guilty to immigration-related charges in federal court Wednesday, following an investigation by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).

Eight were charged with eluding examination and inspection by immigration officials, in violation of Title 8, U.S. Code, Section 1325. They are Rafael Garcia-Tiscareno, Jose Guadalupe Rodriguez, Victorino Gutierrez-Licona, Lucio Huerta-Ponce, Luis Humberto Huerta-Ponce, Luis Raul Huerta-Ponce, Juan Manuel Martinez-Rodriguez and Jorge Alberto Ruiz-Ponce.

In addition, two defendants, Flavio Martinez-Andres and Olegario Ortega-Solis, pleaded guilty to re-entering the United States after deportation, in violation of Title 8, U.S. Code, Section 1326.

A federal grand jury returned a criminal indictment with the charges on Dec. 14, 2010. According to the investigation, on Nov. 15, 2010, all were found in the United States while employed by J & A Framers Carpentry, Inc., a North Carolina corporation owned and operated by Juan Lopez and Jose Lopez.

At sentencing, the defendants face up to two years imprisonment.

Assistant U.S. Attorneys Dennis Duffy and Sebastian Kielmanovich prosecuted the case.