ALEXANDRIA, La. — A Central African Republic citizen was convicted in federal court Tuesday on two felony charges of obstructing his removal from the United States. U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) attempted to deport the man on two separate occasions, Nov. 14, 2011 and March 13, 2012, but each time he resisted ICE officers with physical force.
According to court documents, Seyba Diallo, 46, became physically combative and yelled when ICE officers attempted to put him on commercial flights at the Alexandria International Airport. Diallo's actions violated both Transportation Security Administration and airline policies, which prevented him from boarding the aircraft.
Diallo faces a maximum penalty of 8 years in federal prison, a $250,000 fine and one year of supervised release for each felony count. His sentencing is scheduled for June 10 before U.S. District Judge Dee D. Drell in the Western District of Louisiana. Diallo was originally ordered deported by an immigration judge in July 2009.
"ICE will continue to dedicate all its resources to prosecuting individuals who unlawfully hamper their removal," said Scott L. Sutterfield, acting field office director for the ERO New Orleans. "This case illustrates our close cooperation with the U.S. attorney's office resulting in the successful prosecution of egregious immigration law violators who pose a threat to public safety and border security." Sutterfield oversees ERO activities in Louisiana, Alabama, Arkansas, Mississippi and Tennessee.
Overall, in FY 2012 ICE removed 409,849 individuals. Of these, approximately 55 percent, or 225,390 of the people removed, were convicted of felonies or misdemeanors – almost double the removal of criminals in FY 2008.
This includes 1,215 aliens convicted of homicide; 5,557 aliens convicted of sexual offenses; 40,448 aliens convicted for crimes involving drugs; and 36,166 aliens convicted for driving under the influence. ICE continues to make progress with regard to other categories prioritized for removal. Some 96 percent of all ICE's removals fell into a priority category – a record high.