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Enforcement and Removal
07/11/2019

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ICE removes Saudi man convicted of smuggling charges

PHILADELPHIA — On Wednesday, July 10, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) officers removed a Saudi man, convicted in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Indiana on smuggling and aiding and abetting charges.

Abdulaziz Salem Al Balawi, 25, was sentenced to 24 months incarceration.

On Jan. 17, 2017, Al Balawi lawfully entered the United States in Chicago, Illinois, with a valid U.S. nonimmigrant student visa.

On Aug. 28, 2017, he was arrested by the Federal Bureau of Investigation in Fort Wayne, Indiana on charges related to his role in purchasing and exporting firearm barrels from the United States to Saudi Arabia without the required license.

On Aug. 29, 2017, Al Balawi violated the terms of his admission and his student status was terminated.

On April 27, 2018, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Indiana convicted Al Balawi of smuggling goods from the United States, in violation of Title 18, U.S.C., § 554(a); and aiding and abetting, in violation of Title 18, U.S.C., § 2.

On Jan. 8, ERO Philadelphia issued him a Notice to Appear, charging removability pursuant to the Immigration and Nationality Act as an alien who failed to maintain the nonimmigrant status under which he was admitted; and as an alien convicted of a crime involving moral turpitude committed within five years of admission for which a sentence of one year or longer may be imposed.

On May 24, Moshannon Valley Correctional Center in Philipsburg, Pennsylvania released him to ERO Philadelphia custody. He was detained at York County Prison in York, Pennsylvania.

On June 13, an immigration judge ordered Al Balawi removed from the United States to Saudi Arabia. He waived his right to appeal.

ERO officers removed Al Balawi from the United States and handed him over to Saudi officials without incident.

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Last Reviewed/Updated: 07/12/2019