Florence, South Carolina ---- United States Attorney Sherri A. Lydon announced today that Paulino Luna-Gonzalez, 45, a Mexican citizen, pled guilty in federal court to illegally re-entering the United States after being deported.
Evidence presented to the court showed that on May 13, 2018, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE)-Enforcement and Removal Operations Deportation Officers discovered Luna-Gonzalez while he was in custody at the J. Reuben Long Detention Center in Horry County on state charges. Immigration records revealed that Luna-Gonzalez was a native and citizen of Mexico who had previously been deported from the United States on five separate occasions. Luna-Gonzalez has never received permission to enter or remain in the United States.
Luna-Gonzalez faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in federal prison. United States District Judge R. Bryan Harwell accepted the guilty plea and will sentence Luna-Gonzalez after receiving and reviewing a presentencing report prepared by the United States Probation Office.
The charges against Luna-Gonzalez were the result of an investigation by ICE-Enforcement and Removal Operations in Charleston, with the assistance of the Horry County Police Department. Assistant United States Attorney A. Bradley Parham of the Florence office is prosecuting the case.