• Mon. May 10th, 2021

Mexican man Ruben Ernesto Mendoza-Zapata sentenced for role in smuggling attempt

Mexican man Ruben Ernesto Mendoza-Zapata sentenced for role in smuggling attempt

Mexican man Ruben Ernesto Mendoza-Zapata sentenced for role in smuggling attempt that led to rollover accident

(STL.News) – A 30-year-old Mexican national has been ordered to federal prison for his involvement in a conspiracy to transport undocumented aliens, announced U.S. Attorney Ryan K. Patrick.

Ruben Ernesto Mendoza-Zapata pleaded guilty Jan. 7.

Today, U.S. District Judge Marina Garcia Marmolejo handed Mendoza-Zapata a 41-month term of imprisonment.  Not a U.S. citizen, he is expected to face removal proceedings after serving his sentence.

On Oct. 7, 2019, authorities observed a group of individuals crossing from the Mexican side of Falcon Lake via boat and entering a red Ford Explorer in the United States.  They located the SUV and attempted to get behind it.  However, the driver – later identified as Mendoza-Zapata – fled the scene at a high rate of speed.  During the pursuit, Mendoza-Zapata tried rounding a curve, but rolled the vehicle several times.

Law enforcement secured the scene and rescued the occupants, one of whom was pinned underneath the vehicle.  At the time of the rollover, a 6-year-old boy was also in the SUV.

Mendoza-Zapata has been and will remain in custody pending transfer to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility to be determined in the near future.

Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations conducted the investigation with the assistance of Border Patrol.  Assistant U.S. Attorney David Fawcett prosecuted the case.

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Marty Smith

Marty Smith

Marty Smith is the acting Editor in Chief as well as the founder of STL.News, DirectSourceNews.org, and St. Louis Restaurant Review. Additionally, Smith is the IT Manager responsible for STL.News and affiliate sites. Smith has created multiple aggregator sites to manage the large amount of content used to select which content to published on STL.News. As Editor in Chief, Smith is responsible for the content posted on the network with the help of the publishing team, which is located around the globe.