Villalobos Case Update
LAS CRUCES – Earlier today, ten of the eleven defendants charged in United States v. Villalobos, et al, a federal case alleging a conspiracy to smuggle firearms from the United States to Mexico and with making false statements in connection with the acquisition of firearms and related offenses, made their initial appearances in federal court in Las Cruces, New Mexico. All ten defendants are scheduled to be arraigned at 9:30 a.m. on Tuesday, March 15, 2011 in federal court in Las Cruces. All ten defendants remain in custody pending detention and bail hearings which are scheduled at the same time and on the same date.
An eleventh defendant, Ignacio Villalobos, also known as “Nacho” and “Nachito,” has not been apprehended and is considered a fugitive. Villalobos is 24-years old and has a residence in Columbus, New Mexico. A photograph of Villalobos is attached to this release. United States Attorney Kenneth J. Gonzales seeks the assistance of the public in locating Villalobos. If you have any information about Villalobos’ whereabouts, please contact Homeland Security Investigations at 1-800-973-2867, or any law enforcement officer, or call 9-1-1 immediately. Please do not attempt to apprehend this fugitive yourself.
United States Attorney Gonzales reminds the public that the defendants are charged in an indictment, which is merely an accusation, and that every defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.