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Press Release

Honduran Man Pleads Not Guilty to Unlawfully Transporting Foreign Nationals in Vermont

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

The United States Attorney stated that Guillermo Paredes-Bobadilla, 31, of Honduras and Brunswick, New Jersey, was arraigned yesterday in United States District Court in Burlington on an indictment charging him with unlawfully transporting three individuals from Guatemala who entered the United States illegally. Paredes-Bobadilla pleaded not guilty and remains in the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service in accordance with a prior order of the Court.

According to public documents in the case, during the early morning hours of December 1, 2022, based on information suggesting a nearby illegal border crossing, the United States Border Patrol initiated a traffic stop of a vehicle driven by Paredes-Bobadilla in Highgate, Vermont. Border Patrol identified Paredes-Bobadilla as a Honduran national living in New Jersey who had filed an asylum claim, which had not been adjudicated. The three passengers acknowledged they were from Guatemala and did not have legal status to be in the United States. The passengers stated that each paid $1,000 to be smuggled into the United States and that a foot guide led them to the pick up location.  

The United States Attorney’s Office emphasizes that an indictment is an accusation only and that the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty. As currently charged Paredes-Bobadilla, faces up to five years of imprisonment if convicted. Any sentence in the case will be advised by the United States Sentencing Guidelines. 

U.S. Attorney Nikolas Kerest credited the agents of the United State Border Patrol for their investigation and apprehension of Paredes-Bobadilla and their continued efforts to prevent the exploitation of foreign nationals by human-smuggling organizations. 

Assistant U.S. Attorney Joseph Perella represents the United States in this case. Paredes-Bobadilla is represented by Assistant Federal Public Defender Steven Barth.

Updated December 20, 2022

Human Smuggling