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August 26, 2015Sacramento, CA, United StatesEnforcement and Removal

Accused Mexican ‘Christmas’ killer captured near Yuba City returned to Mexico to face murder charges

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – A Mexican national captured recently in northern California, who is wanted for a fatal Christmas day shooting in Guadalajara four years ago, was turned over to Mexican law enforcement officials by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Wednesday at the San Ysidro border crossing south of San Diego.

Diego Oswaldo Jauregui-Rosales, 31, was transferred by ICE Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) officers to the custody of representatives from the Mexican Attorney General’s Office. An arrest warrant issued in March 2012 by authorities in Jalisco, Mexico, charges Jauregui-Rosales with one count of murder and two counts of attempted murder.

According to the arrest warrant, the murder victim, Osvaldo Garcia Velazquez, was standing with two friends on a Guadalajara street corner Christmas morning in 2011 when the accused and two other men came up behind him. Witnesses say the three men drew weapons and began firing at Garcia and his companions. The murder victim attempted to flee, but he suffered a fatal bullet wound to the chest and collapsed nearby. 

Authorities now believe the suspect entered the U.S. illegally within days of the murder, but investigators here did not learn about his possible whereabouts in northern California until recently. FBI representatives based in Jalisco were alerted by Mexican authorities that the suspect might have sought refuge with relatives in Colusa County. The FBI relayed the information to Department of Homeland Security personnel in Sacramento who contacted ICE ERO. ERO, working in close collaboration with the U.S. Marshals Regional Fugitive Task Force, began following up on potential leads. On April 28, ERO officers and members of the Fugitive Task Force were conducting surveillance on a residence in Williams when they observed a man matching Jauregui-Rosales’ description come out, get into a vehicle and drive away. Task Force members and officers with the Williams Police Department stopped the car and took Jauregui-Rosales into custody without incident.

“As this case makes clear, violent fugitives who believe they can evade justice by fleeing to the U.S. will find no refuge here,” said Michael Vaughn, assistant field office director for ERO Sacramento. “Owing to some outstanding investigative work by ICE and its partner law enforcement agencies, both locally and in Mexico, this suspect will now be held accountable if the courts find he did indeed commit this brutal crime. Protecting the American people by taking dangerous criminal aliens off our streets has been and will always be our first priority.”

“This fugitive investigation is yet another example of the highly effective partnership between federal and local law enforcement,” said U.S. Marshal Albert Najera. “Violent fugitives from anywhere in the world can run, but they cannot hide in the United States for long. We can and will find them.”

On Aug. 5, an immigration judge ruled Jauregui-Rosales had no legal basis to remain in the United States, paving the way for his repatriation this week. Database checks indicate the Mexican murder suspect has no prior criminal convictions in the U.S.

So far this fiscal year, ICE ERO has removed more than 300 foreign fugitives from the U.S. who were wanted for serious crimes in their native countries, including more than 60 suspects originally arrested in California. Among them was an accused mass murderer captured in Santa Cruz County wanted for killing seven members of a family in Oaxaca more than two decades ago. In Southern California, Los Angeles-based ERO officers located and captured a Mexico City sushi chef in June who is accused of slashing a female companion to death in the backseat of a taxi earlier this year using one of his sushi knives.

Since Oct. 1, 2009, ERO has removed more than 1,150 foreign fugitives from the U.S. who were sought in their native countries for serious crimes. ERO works with HSI’s Office of International Operations, foreign consular offices in the United States, and Interpol to identify foreign fugitives illegally present in the United States.

Updated: 08/27/2015