ALEXANDRIA, La. – A Honduran man illegally present in the United States who was being held by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) pending removal from the country died Friday evening at the Rapides Regional Medical Center in Alexandria, Louisiana.
Saul Enrique Banegas-Guzman, 46, was initially taken from the LaSalle Detention Facility to LaSalle General Hospital in Jena, Louisiana, via ambulance Jan. 5. Doctors there stabilized him and he was subsequently transferred to the Rapides Regional Medical Center where he was admitted to the intensive care unit with a diagnosis of cardiac arrest.
On Jan. 20 Mr. Banegas suffered additional cardiac arrest but was successfully resuscitated. After an additional cardiac arrest Friday he was pronounced dead at the hospital with a preliminary cause of death as cardiac arrest.
Mr. Banegas entered ICE custody Nov. 30 from the Lonoke Police Department Detention Center in Lonoke, Arkansas, following his release from the Arkansas Department of Corrections after serving his sentence for a 2005 felony conviction for manufacturing, distributing or possessing a controlled substance and drug paraphernalia.
Consistent with ICE protocol, the Department of Homeland Security Office of Inspector General and ICE Office of Professional Responsibility were notified of the death as were appropriate state health and local law enforcement agencies. ICE also worked with Honduran consular officials to notify his family in Honduras.
Mr. Banegas is the second detainee to pass away in ICE custody in fiscal year 2016.