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April 11, 2024Hartford, CT, United StatesEnforcement and Removal

ERO Boston arrests Dominican national convicted of drug trafficking offenses in 3 states

Local jurisdiction failed to honor an immigration detainer and released the convicted felon from custody

HARTFORD, Conn. — Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) Boston apprehended a Dominican national convicted of drug trafficking felonies in three U.S. states. Deportation officers from ERO Boston’s Hartford field office arrested the 41-year-old March 21 in Meriden.

Connecticut state authorities ignored a U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) immigration detainer and released the Dominican native despite his previous removal from the United States and previous convictions for drug trafficking offenses in Alaska, Texas and Connecticut. The March 21 arrest was part of a nationwide law enforcement operation focused on arresting unlawfully present drug offenders. The national operation took place from March 11 through March 26 and resulted in the apprehension of 216 unlawfully present drug offenders convicted of drug trafficking or multiple drug possession related offenses involving methamphetamine, fentanyl, cocaine, heroin and synthetic drugs.

“Despite our placement of an immigration detainer seeking custody of this convicted drug trafficker, authorities in Connecticut released him from custody onto the streets of our community,” said ERO Boston Field Office Director Todd M. Lyons. “I am proud of the dedicated work of our ERO Boston team tasked with re-apprehending this noncitizen drug offender. ERO Boston stands ready to work with our state and local partners to help protect our New England neighborhoods from such public safety threats.”

The Dominican national unlawfully entered the United States at an unknown location without being inspected, admitted or paroled by a U.S. immigration official sometime prior to August 2001.

In July 2002, a federal district court in Alaska found him guilty of possession with intent to distribute a controlled substance (cocaine) and sentenced him to three years of incarceration.

In September 2002, police in Houston, Texas, arrested him on charges of delivery of a controlled substance (cocaine).

On July 28, 2003, a Department of Justice (DOJ) immigration judge in San Antonio, Texas, ordered the Dominican citizen removed from the United States.

In December 2003, a Houston, Texas, court found him guilty of the narcotics offense and sentenced him to 15 years in Texas state prison.

ICE removed the Dominican national Aug. 5, 2009. However, he unlawfully reentered the United States at an unknown location on an unknown date without having been inspected, admitted or paroled by a U.S. immigration official.

On April 19, 2018, Danbury police arrested him for the sale of narcotics (cocaine). While in state custody, deportation officers from ERO Boston’s Hartford field office lodged an immigration detainer seeking his custody. In December 2018, while he was in Connecticut state custody, ERO Boston charged him with illegal reentry of a removed alien.

The U.S. District Court for the District of Connecticut found him guilty of illegal reentry of a removed alien April 20, 2019, and sentenced him to time served. The Dominican national’s federal time was served consecutively with his state sentence.

In May 2019, the Connecticut Superior Court in Danbury him guilty of the sale of narcotics (cocaine).

Despite the existence of an active immigration detainer, Connecticut state authorities released the Dominican national on parole April 21, 2020. Connecticut authorities failed to notify ICE of his release.

On March 21, 2024, ERO Boston officers from Hartford arrested him on federal immigration charges in Meriden. He will remain in ICE custody pending his removal from the United States.

ERO conducts removals of individuals without a lawful basis to remain in the United States, including at the order of immigration judges with the Justice Department’s Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR). EOIR is a separate entity from the Department of Homeland Security and ICE. Immigration judges in these courts make decisions based on the merits of each individual case, determining if a noncitizen is subject to a final order of removal or eligible for certain forms of relief from removal.

As one of ICE’s three operational directorates, ERO is the principal federal law enforcement authority in charge of domestic immigration enforcement. ERO’s mission is to protect the homeland through the arrest and removal of those who undermine the safety of U.S. communities and the integrity of U.S. immigration laws, and its primary areas of focus are interior enforcement operations, management of the agency’s detained and non-detained populations, and repatriation of noncitizens who have received final orders of removal. ERO’s workforce consists of more than 7,700 law enforcement and non-law enforcement support personnel across 25 domestic field offices and 208 locations nationwide, 30 overseas postings, and multiple temporary duty travel assignments along the border.

Members of the public can report crime and suspicious activity by calling 866-DHS-2-ICE (866-347-2423) or completing the ICE online tip form.

Learn more about ERO Boston’s mission to increase public safety in our New England communities on X, formerly known as Twitter, at @EROBoston.