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ICE's top 5 news stories for the week ending Dec. 23, 2011

Dec. 22, 2011 — US, Mexico seize more than $80 million during Operation Holiday Hoax

The National Intellectual Property Rights Coordination Center (IPR Center) led a six-week operation in conjunction with the Tax Administration Service of Mexico (SAT). The operation was coined Operation Holiday Hoax. Agents supporting the IPR Center seized more than 327,000 counterfeit items with an estimated value of $76.8 million. The SAT seized $7.1 million of counterfeit goods.  Full Story

Dec. 22, 2011 — 12 charged in Panamanian drug trafficking conspiracy

Over the course of three years, HSI and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) worked with local law enforcement agencies in the United States and Panama to take down an international drug trafficking organization. Couriers allegedly traveled to Panama to smuggle heroin and cocaine into the United States.  They smuggled the drugs in small compartments sewn into Lycra shorts and within hair weaves and wigs to avoid law enforcement detection. Twelve individuals were indicted this week for their role in the conspiracy. Full Story

Dec. 21, 2011 — Defendant charged with alleged participation in the murder and attempted murder of 2 ICE HSI special agents extradited from Mexico to the US

Julian Zapata Espinoza, also known as "Piolin," has been extradited from Mexico to the United States to face charges for his alleged participation in the murder of HSI Special Agent Jaime Zapata and the attempted murder of HSI Special Agent Victor Avila on Feb. 15, 2011, in Mexico. Full Story

Dec. 21, 2011 — ICE deports convicted Rwandan to serve sentence for role in 1994 genocide

Rwanda's Gacaca Courts issued an arrest warrant for human rights violator Marie Claire Mukeshimana, who was convicted of murdering a child during the 1994 genocide in Rwanda. Mukeshimana attempted to enter the United States on a travel visa, but was denied entry. On Tuesday, she was deported to Rwanda by officers with ICE's Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO). Full Story

Dec. 19, 2011 — 63 arrested in ICE operation targeting criminal aliens in San Jose area

ICE ERO officers arrested 63 individuals during a four-day enforcement action in and around San Jose, Calif. Fifty-five of those arrested have prior criminal convictions. Eight have been charged with crimes, but their cases are still pending. The offenses range from selling heroin and amphetamines to child molestation and spousal abuse.  Full Story