News and Press Releases


March 31, 2011

Twelve persons alleged to be illegally in the United States appeared in United States District Court in Benton on March 31, 2011, on charges that they illegally entered the United States from Mexico after having previously been removed from this country, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of Illinois, Stephen R. Wigginton, announced today. Eight of the defendants were charged with that offense by a Federal Grand Jury on March 24, 2011. Specifically, the Grand Jury charged Luis Alberto Jimenez-Sandoval, 29 of Cuernavaca, Morelos, Mexico, and Efrain Garcia- Garcia, 46 of Hidalgo, Michoacan, Mexico, with committing that offense on March 4, 2011, after they were found in Effingham, Illinois, on that date. The Grand Jury also charged Jose Victor Martinez-Garcia, 22 of Concepcion Amenas, Guatemala, Amado Martinez-Maya, 25 of Ocampo, Michoacan, Mexico, Marta Palacios-Rivas, 29 of Puerto Rivera, El Salvador, Humberto Figueroa- Roldan, 50 of Las Minas, Chiquimula, Guatemala, Hector Hernandez-Romero, 23 of Teran, Chiapas, Mexico, and Carlos Montes De Oca-Dominguez, 25 of Hidalgo, Michoacan, Mexico, with committing that offense on March 8, 2011, after each of these six were also found in Effingham on that date. Four other defendants were charged with committing the illegal reentry offense on March 4, 2011, in separate criminal complaints filed by the United States Attorney’s Office on March 31st. The criminal complaints allege that those four defendants were also found in Effingham.

An indictment or a criminal complaint is a charge against a defendant. Under the law, a defendant is presumed to be innocent of a charge until proved guilty beyond a reasonable doubt to the satisfaction of a jury.

All twelve defendants were ordered held without bond and remanded to the custody of the United States Marshal pending further proceedings. All eight defendants charged in the indictment were given trial dates of May 31, 2011, at 9:00 a.m. at the United States Courthouse in Benton.

The cases were investigated by the Homeland Security Investigations division of Immigration, Customs, and Enforcement (ICE) and the Effingham County Sheriff’s Department. The cases are being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys James M. Cutchin and Michael C. Carr.



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