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Press Release

Repeat smuggler fleeing with law enforcement on car door heads to prison

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

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas – A 49-year-old Houston man has been ordered to federal prison following his conviction of smuggling undocumented aliens, announced U.S. Attorney Jennifer B. Lowery.

Alex Chamie pleaded guilty April 21.  

Today, U.S. District Judge Drew B. Tipton ordered Chamie to serve 51 months in federal prison to be immediately followed by three years of supervised release. At the hearing, the court heard additional details that described Chamie’s extensive criminal history including 11 burglaries, nine thefts and two drug convictions among other criminal misconduct. In handing down the sentence, the court noted he was also previously convicted of conspiring to transport undocumented aliens in 2018.

On Feb. 23, law enforcement observed multiple individuals moving in brush on the side of U.S. Highway 281 north of a Border Patrol (BP) checkpoint located near Falfurrias. At that time, Chamie pulled over near the group. They ran out of the brush and loaded into the car.

Authorities attempted to stop the vehicle. However, the car failed to yield and increased speed. Eventually, the car pulled over to the shoulder of the road and the individuals fled into the brush.

Chamie ignored commands to place his car in park and attempted to flee, but law enforcement was holding on to the driver’s side door. They subdued him and turned off the vehicle. A search revealed a black pepper spray gun resembling a firearm tucked into his waistband.

Later, authorities found four individuals all determined to be illegally present in the country.

Chamie will remain in custody pending transfer to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility to be determined in the near future.

Customs and Border Protection conducted the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney J. Parker Gochenour prosecuted the case.

Updated July 26, 2022

Human Smuggling