Saul Valenzuela-navarro Pleads Guilty in U.S. Federal Cour
Bill Mercer, United States Attorney for the District of Montana, announced today that during a federal court session in Great Falls on September 17, 2009, before U.S. District Judge Sam E. Haddon, SAUL VALENZUELA-NAVARRO, a 35-year-old citizen of Mexico, pled guilty to illegal re-entry after having been deported previously. Sentencing is set for December 14, 2009. He is currently detained.
In an Offer of Proof filed by Assistant U.S. Attorney Bryan R. Whittaker, the government stated it would have proved at trial the following:
On June 23, 2009, an agent with the U.S. Customs and Border Protection encountered VALENZUELA-NAVARRO while responding to a call for assistance from the Rocky Boy's Police Department on the Rocky Boy's Indian Reservation near Box Elder.
VALENZUELA-NAVARRO produced a Mexican voter card as identification. The agent called Havre Sector Dispatch and ran records check using VALENZUELA-NAVARRO'S name and date of birth. These checks revealed multiple prior deportations and several arrests and convictions for criminal charges.
A fingerprint analysis returned positive hits from several records checks systems for criminal and immigration violations for VALENZUELA-NAVARRO. The fingerprint examination also positively identified the fingerprints as belonging to VALENZUELA-NAVARRO, who had previously been deported and removed from the United States on October 8, 1998, April 28, 2000, September 22, 2000, July 22, 2004, October 19, 2004, and January 3, 2005.
Testimony and documentation would have been presented to establish that a search of immigration records revealed no evidence that VALENZUELA-NAVARRO ever requested, or obtained permission from the Attorney General of the United States or his successor, the Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security to apply for re-entry into the United States.
VALENZUELA-NAVARRO faces possible penalties of 10 years in prison, a $250,000 fine and 3 years supervised release.
The investigation was a cooperative effort between the U.S. Customs and Border Protection and the Rocky Boy's Reservation Police Department.
A copy of the Offer of Proof can be obtained by contacting Sally Frank at (406) 247-4638.