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January 6, 2023New York, NY, United StatesEnforcement and Removal

ERO New York apprehends Ecuadoran citizen with violent criminal history

NEW YORK – Deportation officers from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) New York City apprehended a 46-year-old Ecuadoran citizen with a history of violence toward children. The officers from ERO New York City’s Newburgh sub-office arrested Manuel Zumba-Mejia in Ossining, Jan. 5 without incident, for unlawfully re-entering the United States.

Zumba-Mejia was convicted in February 2010 for the assault of his 7-week-old daughter. The Westchester County Court convicted Zumba-Mejia of reckless assault – causing serious brain injury to a child less than 5 years old by shaking or impacting the head – and sentenced him to three years’ incarceration.

“Manual Zumba-Mejia has a history of violence toward his daughter,” said Acting Field Office Director Kenneth Genalo of ERO New York City. “He has been removed from the U.S. previously, and he unlawfully returned. ERO New York City will not allow our communities to be safe havens for the world’s criminals; we will continue to work tirelessly to protect the law-abiding residents of New York.”

Zumba Mejia initially entered the United States at an unknown location on an unknown date, and without having been inspected or admitted by an immigration official. ERO officials first encountered Zumba-Mejia in February 2009 at Westchester County Jail because of his apprehension from assaulting his daughter. ERO lodged an immigration detainer.

Upon the completion of his incarceration, ERO removed Zumba-Mejia in September 2011 from the United States and returned him to Ecuador. However, Zumba-Mejia unlawfully re-entered the U.S. on an unknown date, at an unknown location, and without having been inspected or admitted by an immigration official.

In April 2022, the Croton-on-Hudson Village Court convicted Zumba-Mejia of driving while intoxicated and sentenced him to a conditional discharge and $1,000 fine. They also revoked his driver’s license.

Upon his arrest Jan. 5, ERO New York City presented Zumba-Mejia to the federal magistrate judge at Southern District of New York, White Plains, who remanded Zumba-Mejia to the custody of the United States Marshals Service pending trial.

ERO officers make enforcement decisions on a case-by-case basis in responsible manner, informed by their experience as law enforcement professionals and in a way that best protects against the greatest threats to the homeland.

Noncitizens placed into removal proceedings receive their legal due process from federal immigration judges in the immigration courts, which are administered by the Justice Department’s Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR). EOIR is an agency within the U.S. Department of Justice and is separate from the Department of Homeland Security and ICE. Immigration judges in these courts make decisions based on the merits of each individual case. ICE officers carry out the removal decisions made by the federal immigration judges.

In fiscal year (FY) 2022, ERO arrested 46,396 noncitizens with criminal histories; this group had 198,498 associated charges and convictions. These included 21,531 assault offenses; 8,164 sex and sexual assault offenses; 5,554 weapons offenses; 1,501 homicide-related offenses; and 1,114 kidnapping offenses.

ICE’s ERO directorate upholds U.S. immigration law at, within, and beyond our borders. ERO operations target public safety threats, such as convicted criminal noncitizens and gang members, as well as individuals who have otherwise violated our nation's immigration laws, including those who illegally re-entered the country after being removed and immigration fugitives ordered removed by federal immigration judges. ERO deportation officers assigned to Interpol also assist in targeting foreign fugitives or Fugitive Arrest and Removal (FAR) cases for crimes committed abroad at-large in the U.S. ERO manages all aspects of the immigration enforcement process, including identification and arrest, detention, bond management, supervised release, as well as transportation and removal. In addition, ERO repatriates noncitizens ordered removed from the U.S. to more than 170 countries around the world.

Members of the public can report crimes or suspicious activity by calling 866-347-2423 or completing ICE’s online tip form.

Learn more about ICE’s mission to increase public safety in your community on Twitter @ERONewYork.