Two Mexican nationals are in custody after prosecutors charged them with felony weapons crimes. Law enforcement officers also arrested a twice-deported Mexican national for impersonating a federal agent. Officials came to the area after they were alerted that illegal immigrants were “periodically firing shots.”
Federal law (18 U.S.C. §922(g)(5)) makes it a felony for an illegal immigrant to possess a firearm.
Telemundo and Mississippi News Now reported that 24-year-old Manuel Cardenas Pardo, a twice-deported illegal alien, a black shirt emblazoned with the word “POLICE” in his possession. Leake County Sheriff’s Office deputies and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers stopped him as he drove his dark gray Dodge Charger equipped with a blue light in the windshield, a siren, and a dash cam. Officials said a badge that said “U.S. Agent” and a “law enforcement type gun belt” were found in a search of Pardo’s home.
“It would be very probable that he would be targeting Hispanic decent people, maybe even other illegals knowing that they would not report it if he did,” Leake County Sheriff Greg Waggoner told reporters. “This has happened in the past according to the federal agents.”
Officials also arrested Juan A. Custodio (19), Laura Pardo Palma (49), and Elvia Gonzales (38).
The Mississippi news outlet reported that sheriff’s deputies and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents started surveillance in the area around a mobile home park in Leake County last week.
Officials also arrested Custodio, a Mexican national, who was in Pardo’s vehicle when Pardo was stopped.
Palmo reportedly lives with Pardo and allegedly had a .25 caliber semi-automatic pistol in his possession.
Police arrested Elvia Gonzalez after finding an “AK-47 rifle/pistol and ammunition” in her truck.
All four Mexican nationals are reported to be in federal custody.