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June 10, 2019Nogales, AZ, United StatesEnforcement and Removal

ICE removes Mexican national wanted for rape

NOGALES – A Mexican national, wanted in his native country for rape, was removed Friday by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE), Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO), and transferred to the custody of the Mexican Federal Police.

On Nov. 15, 2000, the Criminal Judicial Branch in Sinaloa, Mexico, issued a warrant against Arturo Lopez-Mendez (a.k.a. “El Mocho”), 45, for the offense of rape. On June 18, 2018, Mexican authorities notified ERO Phoenix that Lopez-Mendez was subject to an outstanding arrest warrant on rape charges. Lopez-Mendez allegedly assaulted and raped a seven-year-old female at a private residence, leaving the victim with visible signs of the assault, including blood-soaked pants and legs.

Lopez-Mendez came into ICE custody April 24, 2019, following his arrest by the United States Border Patrol and subsequent conviction for possession with intent to distribute marijuana. On April 25, he was issued a final administrative removal order.

“Criminals who attempt to evade their home country’s law enforcement reach will not find refuge in Arizona,” said Albert Carter, acting field office director for ERO Phoenix. “ICE will continue to work with our international counterparts to aggressively pursue criminals who threaten the public safety of our local-area communities.”

ICE is focused on removing public safety threats, such as convicted criminal aliens and gang members, as well as individuals who have violated our nation’s immigration laws, including those who illegally re-enter the country after a prior removal, and immigration fugitives ordered removed by federal immigration judges.

Updated: 10/08/2020