ST. GEORGE, Utah – U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) filed a detainer June 19 on a Mexican national accused of child rape and aggravated sexual assault on a child.
Roberto Garcia-Madrigal, 47, turned himself into police June 3 after a warrant for his arrest was issued by a judge in Weber County for charges of rape, sodomy and aggravated sexual abuse of a child. The detainer, filed in St. George, was issued in response to his arrest.
Garcia-Madrigal claims to have entered the U.S. sometime in 1975 and has no other documented immigration history.
Garcia Madrigal has arrests from several states beginning in 1989 for grand theft auto and weapons possession, and through the 1990s for cocaine possession, burglary, more weapons charges and receiving stolen property.
ICE lodges detainers on individuals who have been arrested on criminal charges and who ICE has probable cause to believe are removable aliens. The detainer asks the other law enforcement agency to notify ICE in advance of release and to maintain custody of the alien for a brief period of time so that ICE can take custody of that person in a safe and secure setting upon release from that agency’s custody. When law enforcement agencies honor immigration detainers it ensures ICE’s ability to protect public safety and carry out its mission.
ICE focuses its limited resources, first and foremost, on those who pose the greatest threat to public safety and border security and does not target aliens indiscriminately; the agency conducts investigations and gathers intelligence on specific individuals for immigration enforcement.
Targets are often those who were arrested on local criminal charges or have blatant disregard for U.S. immigration laws. The agency’s arrest statistics clearly reflect this. Nationally, approximately 86 percent of all people arrested by ICE during fiscal year 2019 either had a criminal conviction, a pending criminal charge, had illegally re-entered the United States after being previously removed (a felony charge) or were an immigration fugitive subject to a judge’s final order of removal.
In most cases, once these aliens that are pending criminal prosecution are transferred to ICE or otherwise enter ICE custody, ICE works with the prosecutor and law enforcement authorities (such as the district attorney’s office and relevant sheriff’s office) to ensure these aliens attend any and all criminal court proceedings. This ICE-DA cooperation involves transferring custody of aliens as necessary via “writs of Habeas Corpus” to further a criminal prosecution and ensure the alien is returned to ICE custody once the proceedings are finished. (Such writs may also be used to ensure that aliens in ICE custody appear in court as witnesses.)
Aliens processed for removal may receive their legal due process from federal immigration judges in the immigration courts, which are administered by the Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR). EOIR is an agency within the U.S. Department of Justice and is separate from the U.S. 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.