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02/15/2013

ICE's top 5 news stories for the week ending Feb. 15, 2013

Feb. 13, 2013 – Nogales Tunnel Task Force shuts down cross-border tunnel

Federal authorities shut down a just-completed, cross-border drug smuggling tunnel and seized more than 1,200 pounds of marijuana following a multi-agency investigation by the Nogales Tunnel Task Force, which is led by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI). Full Story

Feb. 13, 2013 – 3 Los Angeles-area residents indicted in large-scale phony credit card scheme

Three Los Angeles-area residents have been indicted by a federal grand jury following a probe by ICE's HSI and the U.S. Secret Service that allegedly revealed the defendants orchestrated a far-reaching scheme to import and produce counterfeit debit and credit cards. So far, investigators have seized more than 90,000 counterfeit credit cards in connection with the case. Full Story

Feb. 12, 2013 – Auction house owner arrested for illegal sale of Korean artifact

The owner of an Oxford, Mich., auction house was arrested by special agents with ICE's HSI for allegedly making false statements and on charges of transporting and selling a Korean artifact. James Amato is the second suspect to be arrested following a two-year investigation into the sale of a Hojo currency plate from 1893. Full Story

Feb. 11, 2013 – ICE deports former director of Salvadoran children's home to face charges of sexually assaulting children under his care

A Salvadoran man was returned to his native country by ICE's Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) to face charges for sexually assaulting five minor children, who were under his care at a children's home he managed in El Salvador. Full Story

Feb. 11, 2013 – 13 additional defendants charged in Operation Dark Night

A superseding indictment has added 13 more defendants for their roles in an alleged sex trafficking and prostitution ring operating in Mexico, Florida, Georgia, the Carolinas and elsewhere. In total, 25 defendants have now been charged in the superseding indictment, which follows the original 12-defendant indictment returned in January. The federal charges follow a lengthy investigation dubbed "Operation Dark Night," led by ICE's HSI. In addition to the 12 arrests and nearly 20 search warrants executed in January, federal authorities rescued 11 women alleged to have been forced into prostitution.  Full Story