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Enforcement and Removal
01/24/2013

ICE removes Dominican Republic fugitive wanted for multiple murders

NEW YORK — A Dominican Republic man, who resided unlawfully in the Inwood section of Manhattan, was deported earlier today and turned over to Dominican Republic authorities by officers with U.S. Immigration and Custom's Enforcement's (ICE) Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO). The man, who was wanted in connection with four murders, was previously removed from the United States after a felony criminal conviction for selling narcotics. After his prior deportation, he illegally re-entered the country.

Hector Vargas-Valero, 39, a Dominican Republic national, was deported from the United States via an ICE charter flight. ERO officers turned him over to Dominican Republic authorities earlier today. His removal follows his Jan. 7, 2013, arrest by ERO officers assigned to the agency's Criminal Alien Program.

On Aug. 26, 2011, Vargas-Valerio and co-conspirators allegedly kidnapped four individuals in which all were murdered in Santiago, Dominican Republic. On Sept. 22, 2011, a judge in Santiago issued a warrant for Vargas-Valerio's arrest in relation to this alleged crime.

On July 12, 2012, Interpol issued a "diffusion notice" for Vargas-Valerio. This notice requests the arrest or location of an individual - or additional information - in relation to a police investigation.

"Vargas-Valerio is an international fugitive who allegedly kidnapped and ended four lives in the Dominican Republic," said Raymond A. Simonse, acting field office director for ERO New York. "He illegally entered the United States in an attempt to evade justice and start a new life. We discovered who he really is, and now we have returned him to his homeland to face prosecution for his alleged crimes."

Vargas-Valerio was admitted into the United States as a lawful permanent resident July18, 1984. New York Superior Court convicted him Oct. 6, 1993, for selling a controlled substance. He was subsequently sentenced to 54 months in prison.

Due to the criminal conviction, his legal status was revoked. On Nov. 18, 1998, the legacy Immigration and Nationality Service removed Vargas-Valerio from the United States to the Dominican Republic.

After his deportation, Vargas-Valerio returned to the United States unlawfully. The agency reinstated his final order of removal from 1998.

Since Oct. 1, 2009, ERO has removed more than 566 foreign fugitives from the United States who were being sought in their native countries for serious crimes, including kidnapping, rape and murder. ERO works with ICE's Office of International Affairs, foreign consular offices in the United States, and Interpol to identify foreign fugitives illegally present in the country.