RICHMOND, Va. - Agustin Rivera-Santana, 53, a Mexican citizen illegally in the United States and most recently residing in Virginia Beach, Va., was sentenced to 240 months in prison, followed by 3 years of supervised release, for illegally re-entering the United States after having been deported following conviction for an aggravated felony offense.
Neil H. MacBride, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia; and Enrique M. Lucero, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Field Office Director, made the announcement after sentencing by United States District Judge Robert E. Payne. Rivera-Santanna pleaded guilty on June 23, 2010.
"Our communities are safer when a repeat criminal like this is kept off our streets," said Henry M. Lucero, director for ICE's Office of Enforcement and Removal Operations in Washington, D.C. "In addition to committing serious crimes in our country, he repeatedly rentered our country after being removed when his sentences were complete. He will now pay the price for not respecting our immigration laws."
According to court documents, on Sept. 24, 1973, Rivera-Santanna entered the United States as a Lawful Permanent Resident. On Dec. 20, 1974, he was convicted in California of reckless driving (reduced from DUI), and was sentenced to 125 days in jail. He was then convicted in Superior Court of California on Jan. 6, 1989, of voluntary manslaughter for shooting his pregnant wife. Rivera-Santanna received a sentence of 11 years reflecting an enhancement of five years for use of a firearm on a felony and of two years for injury that resulted in termination of pregnancy. He was paroled in 1998. On Feb. 7, 1998, the United States deported him to Mexico.
On Feb. 16, 1998, Rivera-Santanna illegally re-entered the United States. He was arrested on Feb. 17, 1998 by Border Patrol agents for alien smuggling and deported back to Mexico seven days later.
A mere week after his deportation, on March 1, 1998, Rivera-Santanna illegally re-entered the United States again. During this period, he did not comply with his parole requirements, leading to the revocation of his parole in 2000. He was once again deported to Mexico on June 12, 2001.
In March 2005, Rivera-Santanna illegally re-entered the United States again. After eluding the Border Patrol, he traveled to Virginia, where he resided with his daughter and her family. On Dec. 6, 2006, he was convicted in the Virginia Beach Circuit Court of aggravated sexual battery and attempted forcible sodomy of a minor, and was sentenced to 30 years in prison. All but six years and 10 months of this sentence were suspended. He is scheduled to be released from the Virginia Department of Corrections on March 9, 2012.
Rivera-Santanna was arrested on the present illegal re-entry charge on May 19, 2009. At the time, he was serving his sentences for aggravated sexual battery and attempted forcible sodomy.
This case was investigated by Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Assistant United States Attorney S. David Schiller prosecuted the case on behalf of the United States.