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Press Release

Honduran Citizen Known as "Rittenhouse Rapist" Convicted of Federal Immigration Crime

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of Pennsylvania

PHILADELPHIA – U.S. Attorney William M. McSwain announced that Milton Mateo Garcia-Vasquez, 32, of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and a citizen of Honduras, entered a plea of guilty before United States District Judge Paul S. Diamond on the charge of unlawfully re-entering the United States after being deported.

The defendant was previously deported and removed from the United States on June 18, 2013, and never requested or received authorization to re-enter the country.  Nonetheless, he broke the law by re-entering the country and then proceeded to commit burglary, kidnapping and rape in Philadelphia.  The defendant was arrested on June 23, 2014 by Philadelphia Police officers and charged with these and other crimes in connection with a rape near Rittenhouse Square.  The defendant pleaded guilty to those charges in 2015 and was sentenced to a total of 22-44 years in prison.

“This case is a law-abiding citizen’s nightmare: an illegal alien who has been previously deported comes back into the country illegally and commits appalling crimes.  And it is a reminder of why we are a nation of laws and why those laws – including immigration laws – should be respected and enforced.  My Office will continue to enforce federal law in a neutral, non-partisan manner, which is the only way to ensure public safety.  And I call on Philadelphia city officials and the District Attorney to stop treating the criminal justice system like a game in which they play political favorites.  There is simply too much at stake for that sort of nonsense.  The public deserves better.” 

“ICE deportation officers not only identify and arrest dangerous criminals in our communities, they also remove them, thereby protecting public safety,” said Simona Flores-Lund, Field Office Director for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) Philadelphia. “ICE continues to face significant obstacles with policies created by local officials which hinder cooperation between ICE and local law enforcement. Yet, the tireless efforts of the men and women of ICE directly contribute to making our communities safer.”

The case was investigated by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (“ICE”), and is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Mary E. Crawley.


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Updated August 7, 2019

Violent Crime