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November 22, 2019El Centro, CA, United StatesEnforcement and Removal

ICE identifies previously removed felon at state prison, removes him to Mexico

El CENTRO – Federal officers with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) in El Centro arrested Luis Gonzalez-Valencia, a 44-year-old Mexican national and confirmed gang member, who was released from Calipatria State Prison after serving an 11-year sentence for manslaughter in 2003. He was arrested Friday morning after ICE officers verified his identity at the prison.

“We are grateful for the cooperation of the California State Department of Corrections honoring the lodged detainer for this violent felon; however, ICE continues to be challenged by California’s protection of the criminal alien populations within their correctional system. These challenges are further enhanced when California’s legislative body devalues criminal convictions specifically inhibiting federal immigration entities from using those convictions for removal or federal prosecution,” said Jamison Matuszewski, ICE deputy field office director in San Diego.

Gonzalez was processed for reinstatement of removal at the ICE ERO office in El Centro and immediately removed to Mexico. While in state custody, ICE had lodged a detainer indicating that Gonzalez was a previously deported felon.

According to ICE records, Gonzalez was convicted on separate burglary charges in 1994 and 1996, which rendered him deportable under the Immigration and Nationality Act. An immigration judge ordered his removal to Mexico Feb. 11, 1999. ICE removed him to Mexico in February 1999.

At some point thereafter, Gonzalez illegally re-entered the United States. In 2003, he was convicted of voluntary manslaughter and sentenced to 11 years in state prison.

ICE removed him to Mexico Friday, Nov. 22.