In two separate incidents, Border Patrol agents arrested a child rapist and an MS-13 member in southern Arizona–both were previously deported following felony convictions. The men will be charged with illegal re-entry after removal felonies.
Agents assigned to the Nogales Station arrested 33-year-old Rene Maldonado-Alvarado on January 6 after he illegally crossed the border from Mexico. Agents transported the illegal immigrant for processing where a background investigation revealed a criminal history. Agents learned that an Adams County, Washington, court convicted Maldonado-Alvarado for “Rape of a Child in the Third Degree” in 2016, according to information provided by U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials.
The Adams County Superior Court sentenced the Mexican national to a one-year prison sentence for raping the child. Officials did not specify the precise age of the victim. Immigration officers removed Maldonado-Alvarado from the U.S. following his prison sentence. Washington statutes define Rape of a Child in the Third Degree as a rape where the minor is at least 14-years-old and not older than 16. The accused rapist must be at least four years older than the victim, according to the Washington State Legislature. The maximum penalty under this statute is up to five years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.
Maldonado-Alvarado now faces federal charges of aggravated illegal re-entry after removal as a sex offender. If he is convicted under this charge, he could face up to 20 years in federal prison.
The following afternoon, agents patrolling near Sasabe, Arizona, arrested three Honduran nationals after they crossed the border illegally. The Tucson Sector agents transported them to the station for processing. Officials discovered that Eldin Zuniga-Zuniga, 29, is a member of the transnational criminal MS-13 gang. Officials said he has an extensive criminal history which includes a conviction in February 2017 for possession of a dangerous drug with the intent to distribute.
Agents held Zuniga in federal custody, where he will be charged with aggravated re-entry after removal as a convicted felon. He also faces a possible 20-year prison sentence if convicted.
Agents processed the remaining two Honduran nationals for immigration violations.