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Thursday, March 21, 2013

Brazilian Husband and Wife Sentenced in Florida for Alien Smuggling

Brazilian nationals Juliana Rose Tome-Froes and her husband, Fabio Rodrigues Froes, were sentenced today in Miami to 60 months and 46 months in prison, respectively, for smuggling undocumented migrants to the United States for profit, announced Acting Assistant Attorney General Mythili Raman of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, U.S. Attorney Wifredo A. Ferrer of the Southern District of Florida and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Director John Morton.

Tome-Froes, 36, and Froes, 49, were sentenced by U.S. District Court Judge Federico A. Moreno in the Southern District of Florida.  In addition to the prison sentences, Judge Moreno ordered each defendant to forfeit $150,000 in illegal proceeds.      

On Jan. 16, 2013, Tome-Froes and Froes pleaded guilty to charges arising from their involvement in human smuggling.  According to court documents, from at least October 2008 until approximately September 2010, the defendants organized, operated and managed a human smuggling network that spanned from Brazil to France, England, The Bahamas and the United States.  The defendants met with undocumented migrants and negotiated forms of payment to be smuggled into the United States.  Before the undocumented migrants departed Brazil, the defendants instructed them to act like tourists and explained that the itinerary through Europe would support a tourist cover story.  In exchange for approximately $16,000, Tome-Froes, with assistance from Froes, arranged air transportation from Brazil to Paris, then London and Nassau, Bahamas.  Tome-Froes arranged the undocumented migrants’ lodging in Paris and Nassau, and then instructed them to fly to Freeport, Bahamas, where they waited for a boat to transport them to the United States.  For the final leg into the United States, Tome-Froes coordinated with various individuals in South Florida to pilot a small boat to Freeport, which picked up the undocumented migrants and transported them to the United States.  According to court documents, the defendants knew the undocumented migrants did not have authorization to enter the United States. 

The case was prosecuted by Trial Attorney Jay Bauer of the Criminal Division’s Human Rights and Special Prosecutions Section and Assistant U.S. Attorney Marton Gyires of the Southern District of Florida.  The investigation was conducted by ICE Homeland Security Investigations in Miami.

Press Release Number: 
Updated September 15, 2014