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Press Release

Florida Man Sentenced to 30 Months for Illegally Transporting an Alien

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

MADISON, WIS. – Timothy M. O’Shea, United States Attorney for the Western District of Wisconsin, announced that Gerardo Hernandez Anselmo, 34, of Kissimmee, Florida, was sentenced yesterday by U.S. District Judge William M. Conley to 30 months in prison for illegally transporting an alien.  Hernandez Anselmo pleaded guilty to this charge on June 9, 2023.

On June 10, 2022, an officer in the Colby-Abbotsford Police Department received information from a relative that R.E. had not returned home from work the day before.  The complainant reported that he went to R.E.’s place of employment to find him, and while there, learned there was a video of the parking lot that showed R.E. getting into the backseat of a car that had parked next to R.E.’s car.

Citizens familiar with R.E. told law enforcement that they suspected R.E. had been driven to Florida to work off a debt he owed to Gerardo Hernandez Anselmo and his wife because they helped R.E. enter the country illegally.

Law enforcement in Florida went to an address in Kissimmee, Florida where they found the defendant and Felipe Engracia-Gonzalez.  They also recovered R.E. and interviewed him.  R.E. identified the defendant and Engracia-Gonzalez as the people who drove him from Abbotsford, Wisconsin to Kissimmee, Florida against his will. 

On September 7, 2023, Judge Conley sentenced Engracia-Gonzalez, who had been in custody since June 2022, to a sentence of time served.  Engracia-Gonzalez was illegally in the United States and was deported upon his release from federal custody.  

The charge against Hernandez Anselmo was the result of an investigation conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Marathon County Sheriff’s Office, Colby-Abbotsford Police Department, and the Kissimmee (Florida) Police Department, with assistance from the Marathon County District Attorney’s Office.  Assistant U.S. Attorneys Elizabeth Altman and Chadwick Elgersma prosecuted this case. 

Updated September 15, 2023