Asylum Seekers Charged with Alien Smuggling
Assistant U. S. Attorney Kareem Salem (619) 546-8904
NEWS RELEASE SUMMARY – February 26, 2019
SAN DIEGO – A couple from El Salvador awaiting the outcome of pending asylum cases was arrested yesterday at the U.S. Border Patrol State Route 94 Immigration Checkpoint and charged with alien smuggling.
According to a federal complaint, Edy Giovanni Fuentes-Alvarado and his wife, Kenia Yamileth Gomez-Caballero, approached the primary inspection area of the checkpoint in a white Nissan Armada at 12:06 p.m. Monday. They were referred to secondary inspection to verify their lawful presence in the U.S. after they told agents they are citizens of El Salvador who have an asylum case pending.
In secondary, Fuentes told agents that he and his wife came to the area to pick up his cousin, whom they acknowledged was an undocumented immigrant. Fuentes said they were waiting for a phone call from the cousin. An agent received permission from Fuentes to search his phone and discovered text messages appearing to coordinate transportation and a GPS location of the cousin.
Border Patrol agents used information from Fuentes’ phone to track the cousin and a second person near the intersection of Otay Lakes Road and State Route 94. Both told the agents they are citizens of El Salvador and illegally present in the U.S. They were taken into custody.
DEFENDANTS Case Number 19mj0808
Edy Giovanni Fuentes-Alvarado Age: 37 El Salvador
Kenia Yamileth Gomez-Caballero Age: 36 El Salvador
SUMMARY OF CHARGES
Transportation of Certain Aliens – Title 8, U.S.C., Section 1324(a)(1)(A)(ii)
Maximum penalty: Five years for each alien
U.S. Border Patrol
*The charges and allegations contained in an indictment or complaint are merely accusations, and the defendants are considered innocent unless and until proven guilty.