News and Press Releases

News and Press Releases

Prosecutions continue in illegal entry cases involving those with prior criminal records

March 22, 2012

MINNEAPOLIS – In the District of Minnesota, court action continues in federal cases
involving two foreign nationals who entered the United States illegally after being deported as
criminals. Today in Minneapolis, one of those men was sentenced, while earlier this week the
other man pleaded guilty to one count of illegal re-entry after removal.

Earlier today, U.S. District Court Judge Patrick J. Schiltz sentenced Mario Montalban-
Ramirez, age 63, to 40 months in prison on one count. Montalban-Ramirez was indicted on
January 4, 2011, and pleaded guilty on March 21, 2011. After he completes his sentence,
Montalban-Ramirez will be deported.

In his plea agreement, he admitted that on or about December 7, 2010, he was found in
the U.S. illegally after having been previously deported to Mexico. His deportation followed a
1984 Texas conviction for murder. The current federal case resulted from an arrest by Metro
Transit Police in Ramsey County for trespassing and open container. He was in the Ramsey
County Jail when he was identified as an illegal alien with a criminal record. That identification
was made though the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (“ICE”) Criminal Alien
Program (“CAP”). The goal of that program is to locate criminal aliens incarcerated in federal
and state prisons, as well as in local jails, and prevent them from being released into society by
having them federally prosecuted for illegally re-entering the United States. In some instances, federal prosecution will occur only after the individual is prosecuted for the recent underlying

This case was the result of an investigation by the Metro Transit Police Department and
ICE’s Enforcement and Removal Operations (“ICE ERO”). It was prosecuted by Assistant U.S.
Attorney Kevin S. Ueland.

On March 19, 2012, Cristian Paolo Gutierrez Ceballos, age 28, pleaded guilty in the
second case. Ceballos, who was indicted on January 10, 2012, entered his plea before U.S.
District Court Judge Donovan W. Frank in St. Paul.

In his plea agreement, Ceballos admitted that on December 21, 2011, he was found in
the U.S. illegally after having been previously deported to Guatemala. Ceballos’s deportation
followed a 2006 Nevada conviction for attempted lewdness with a child under the age of 14.
The current federal indictment resulted from his December 21 arrest for not possessing a
driver’s license. He was in the Carver County Jail when he was identified as an illegal alien
though the CAP.

For his crime, Ceballos, also known as Christian Gutierrez, faces a potential maximum
penalty of 20 years in prison, followed by deportation. Judge Frank will determine his sentence
at a future hearing. This case is the result of an investigation by the Chaska Police Department
and ICE ERO. It is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney David P. Steinkamp.

The two men will remain in custody until their current federal cases are resolved. To learn more about the CAP, visit

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