BALTIMORE – Harouna Bangoura, 30, a native and citizen of Guinea, residing in Germantown, Md., was sentenced July 2 to one year in federal prison and one year probation for willfully failing to comply with the terms and conditions of his release under order of supervision from the custody of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO). Mr. Bangoura's criminal convictions include second degree assault and illegal possession of a firearm, both in Montgomery County, Md., and theft over $10,000 in Ocean City, Md.
On June 29, 2005, after completing a five year criminal sentence for second degree assault in Montgomery, Md., Harouna Bangoura, an active gang member of the Bloods, was placed into ERO custody and charged with being in violation of U.S. immigration law. On July 28, 2005, an immigration judge ordered Mr. Bangoura removed from the United States. On Jan. 26, 2007 the Board of Immigration Appeals reaffirmed the immigration judge's decision. On July 24, 2007, ERO released him from custody on an order of supervision after officers were unable to obtain a travel document from his native country of Guinea in the time required by federal law. Prior to being released, he was advised and given a copy of conditions that he must comply with in order to remain out of ICE custody including to not associate with known gang members and not to commit any crimes while on this order of supervision.
He came into ERO custody on two more occasions after he served state sentences for other criminal convictions including a misdemeanor and illegal possession of a firearm, both in Montgomery County and was later released from ERO custody on an order of supervision March 6, 2009 and June 2, 2010, after ERO officers were unable to obtain a travel document from his native country of Guinea in the time required by federal law.
In December 2011, ERO officers in Baltimore presented the case for prosecution and it was accepted by the U.S. Attorney's office in the District of Maryland for charges that he willfully failed to comply with the terms and conditions of his release under Department of Homeland Security order of supervision. On Dec. 22, 2011, he was released by the U.S. Magistrate Judge after his initial appearance under conditions which included that he not commit any crimes while on release. Mr. Bangoura failed to comply with the Magistrate's terms and conditions of his release by being arrested in Ocean City, Md., on possession of stolen property related offenses. According to statements he made at yesterday's sentencing hearing, U.S. Magistrate Judge Paul Grimm sentenced him to the maximum term because of his extensive criminal record and his total disregard of conditions of release set by ICE and the court.
The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael Cunningham.
An order of supervision is used by ERO to release from custody aliens who have been ordered removed from the United States by an immigration judge, but cannot be physically removed to their country of origin for a variety of reasons. The alien's release from custody is subject to conditions of that release. The order of supervision does not confer any immigration status upon the alien. It also imposes reporting requirements and monitoring by deportation officers. Among several reporting requirements, the alien must demonstrate a continued effort to obtain travel documents, provide a current address, and be subject to mental or physical examinations. Failure to comply may result in an enforcement action such as arrest or a fine.