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03/21/2014

Aggravated felon sentenced in Indiana to 6 1/2 years for illegal re-entry, drug possession

SOUTH BEND, Ind. – A convicted felon, who was previously deported to Mexico as an aggravated felon, was sentenced Friday to 6 ½ years in federal prison for illegally re-entering the United States and drug possession.

This sentence resulted from an investigation conducted by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), and the South Bend Police Department.

Abraham DeLuna-Esparza, 39, of South Bend, Ind., was sentenced March 21 to 78 months in prison. DeLuna-Esparza had pleaded guilty to illegally re-entering the United States after having been deported as an aggravated felon, and possessing cocaine/marijuana with intent to distribute.

According to documents filed in federal court, DeLuna was arrested in March 2010 for possessing about 15 pounds of marijuana. He was convicted and sentenced to three months in prison. After completing his prison sentence, DeLuna was turned over to ICE and removed to Mexico in June 2010 through Laredo, Texas. At no time was Deluna given any permission to lawfully re-enter the United States.

In December 2013, Deluna was encountered at his residence in South Bend. HSI special agents and police searched his home and recovered a loaded Ruger 9mm handgun, 47 pounds of marijuana, and 493.3 grams of powder cocaine.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Donald Schmid, Northern District of Indiana, prosecuted this case.