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Press Release

A Previously Removed Czech Citizen was Sentenced to 27 Months in Prison for Attempting to Re-Enter the U.S.

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Southern District of Florida

Ivan Vaclavik, 68, of the Czech Republic was sentenced today to 27 months in prison, to be followed by two years of supervised release, for attempting to enter the United States illegally as an alien who was previously deported, in violation of Title 8, United States Code, Sections 1326(a) and (b)(1). 

Wifredo A. Ferrer, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, and Alysa D. Erichs, Special Agent in Charge, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations (ICE-HSI), made the announcement.

According to court documents, Vaclavik was born in Czechoslovakia, holds a passport from the Czech Republic and is prohibited from entering the United States.  Despite the prohibition, on January 13, 2015, Vaclavik boarded an 18-foot vessel in Freeport, Bahamas, bound for the United States.  During the trip, the vessel lost power and began to take on water due to the turbulent waters.  The boat captain, Henry Noel, radioed for assistance and the United States Coast Guard responded with air and marine assets in order to assist the sinking vessel.  Vaclavik and other vessel occupants were rescued approximately 8 nautical miles off the coast of Palm Beach County, Florida. 

Vaclavik was previously removed from the United States, twice, on October 8, 2013 and again on December 8, 2014, following a series of criminal convictions.  Vaclavik did not apply for nor receive permission to re-enter the United States from the Secretary of Homeland Security or the Attorney General.

Noel previously pled guilty to alien smuggling, in Case No. 15-CR-80024, and was sentenced to 36 months in prison.

Mr. Ferrer commended the investigative efforts of ICE-HIS, United States Customs and Border Protection and United States Border Patrol.  This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Lauren Jorgensen and Jennifer Keene.

A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Florida at Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Southern District of Florida at or on



Updated February 4, 2016