(The Center Square) – In the last week, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents arrested foreign nationals in states thousands of miles from the border who are wanted for violent crimes, including sex offenders and murderers. Most recent arrests were of violent male citizens of Bosnia, Guatemala and Eritrea.
On Aug. 8, an ICE Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) Chicago division agent arrested a Bosnian citizen illegally in the U.S. with an active criminal arrest warrant issued by the Wyandotte County, Kansas, District Court for second-degree murder.
The deportation officer assigned to the U.S. Marshals Service’s Kansas Fugitive Apprehension Task Force (KFATF), with the assistance of Kansas City Crime Stoppers, helped identify and arrest the Bosnian. Kansas City Crime Stoppers received a tip that he was believed to be living in the local area. The agents responded and deployed a surveillance team to the location. At one point, they initiated a lockdown because the Bosnian barricaded himself inside his residence. Agents then worked with a Kansas City Police Tactical Team to successfully breach the residence and apprehend him without further incident. He remains in the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service.
On Aug. 10, ICE ERO New York City division agents arrested Alejandro Pixtun-Hernandez, 56, an “international fugitive wanted in Guatemala for aggravated rape in a continuous manner and with special aggravating circumstances,” ICE said.
Border Patrol agents had first arrested Pixtun on Oct. 9, 2014, near Falfurrias, Texas, after he illegally entered the U.S. in the Rio Grande Valley. Just a few months prior, Guatemalan officials had issued an arrest warrant for Pixtun on March 24, 2014, “for aggravated rape in a continuous manner and with special aggravating circumstances.”
Border Patrol agents processed him for expedited removal and ERO agents removed him to Guatemala on Oct. 14, 2014.
However, “on an unknown date and at an unknown location, Pixtun unlawfully re-entered the United States,” ICE said.
On Nov. 18, 2021, Interpol issued a Red Notice for him related to the same crimes. It wasn’t until Aug. 10, 2023, that he was apprehended. ERO New York City agents arrested him without incident. He remains in ICE custody without bond pending removal to Guatemala.
On Aug. 14, ERO-Baltimore division agents apprehended an Eritrean national in Washington, D.C., who was wanted for convictions in 2017 for sex crimes and sexual abuse committed against a minor, third-degree sex offense and incest in Montgomery County, Maryland.
He was arrested after having lived in the U.S. for over 25 years. Unlike others that were arrested after illegally entering the U.S. through the southwest border, ICE said he legally entered the U.S. at JFK International Airport in New York City in May 1996.
Montgomery County Police officers arrested him in June 2015 and charged him with rape in the second degree, a third-degree sex offense and sex abuse of a minor. In January 2017, the Circuit Court for Montgomery County in Upper Marlboro convicted him of sexual abuse of a minor: house/family, sexual offense third degree and incest, ICE reported, and acquitted him of three counts of third-degree sexual offenses.
For his crimes, his sentencing was mostly suspended, however. Thirteen years of a 25-year sentence was suspended for the charge of sexual abuse of a minor; house/family. All five years of his concurrent five-year sentence for incest were also suspended. All ten years of a 10-year sentence for sex offense third degree were suspended. He was given a four-year period of supervised probation upon his release for the little time he served.
While serving time in prison, in 2017, ERO Baltimore division agents placed an immigration detainer against him to begin the process of deportation.
Two years later, while still incarcerated at Maryland Correctional Institution-Hagerstown, an immigration judge ordered him to be removed to Eritrea in September 2019. He was released from prison into ERO custody for removal. Due to a medical issue, his deportation was delayed and he was released to a residential residence.
It would take another five years before he was arrested again on Aug. 14, 2023, in a local residence. He currently remains in ICE custody pending his removal to Eritrea.