You are here

Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Utah

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, January 31, 2019

Guatemalan National Charged With Transporting Aliens For Financial Gain, Illegally Re-Entering Country After Four Previous Removals

SALT LAKE CITY – A federal grand jury returned an indictment Wednesday afternoon charging Rolando Gomez-Gomez, a Guatemalan national residing in Los Angeles, with three counts of transporting an alien for financial gain and one count of re-entry of a previously removed alien.

The charges in the indictment allege that Gomez-Gomez knowingly transported individuals, who were in the country illegally, within the United States for financial gain.

Gomez-Gomez was arrested Jan. 29, 2019, following a traffic stop in Summit County.  Summit County Deputy Sheriff Vincent Nguyen, who is also a task force officer for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations, executed a traffic stop on a vehicle. Gomez-Gomez, who was driving the vehicle, produced a Guatemalan driver’s license with characteristics indicating it could be fraudulent.  The officer observed numerous male passengers in the back of the van.  HSI special agents and officers with ICE Enforcement and Removal Operations joined Deputy Nguyen in continuing the investigation and eventually transported nine individuals to the ICE field office in West Valley City.

In addition to charges against Gomez-Gomez, the three individuals referred to by initials in the indictment are being charged with illegal re-entry of a previously removed alien. The remaining five, including three minors, will be processed as appropriate by ICE ERO.    

Gomez-Gomez, who was initially arrested for possession of a fraudulent Guatemalan identification card, has been deported from the United States four times.

The defendant is scheduled to make an initial appearance on the indictment Thursday at
3 p.m. before Chief U.S. Magistrate Paul M. Warner. An indictment is not a finding of guilt. Individuals charged in indictments are presumed innocent unless or until proven guilty in court.

The potential maximum penalty for each count of conspiracy to transport aliens is 10 years in prison.  Re-entry of a previously removed alien has a two-year potential maximum sentence.

Topic(s): 
Immigration
Component(s): 
Updated January 31, 2019