Aliens Sentenced for Hostage Taking and Smuggling Operation


By: Jim Kouri, CPP

Four aliens were sentenced in connection with a hostage taking and alien smuggling operation. The suspects were arrest on June 26 in Austin, Texas.

Fernando Lopez-Ugarte, 21, a citizen of Mexico, was sentenced to 20 years in federal prison. On Aug. 31, he pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit hostage taking and conspiracy to smuggle aliens.

Ramiro Garduno-Sanchez, 27, a Mexican national, was sentenced to 20 years in federal prison. On Aug. 31, Garduno-Sanchez pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit hostage taking and conspiracy to smuggle aliens.

Juan Barcenas-Avila, 44, citizen of Mexico, was sentenced to 12 years in federal prison. On Aug. 31, he pleaded guilty to conspiracy to smuggle aliens and illegal reentry after deportation.

Lidia Magaly Vividor-Coronado, 27, citizen of Guatemala, received time served for her participation in the smuggling venture. She is in ICE custody pending removal from the United States. On Aug. 31, she pleaded guilty to misprison of a felony.

“The circumstances involved in this case dealt with violence, gunplay, and hostage taking which are a common practice in the human smuggling trade,” said Jerry Robinette, special agent-in-charge for the Immigration & Customs Enforcement’s Office of Investigations in San Antonio.

“ICE will continue to use every available enforcement tool to bring these smugglers to justice.”

On June 26, Austin Police Department (APD) responded to a 9-1-1 call from a residence located on Newmont Road in Austin. When authorities arrived, a Honduran couple who had escaped from a stash house (where smuggled aliens are temporarily staged) in that neighborhood made claims that they were held against their will and threatened with a gun.
They also said there were 12 others being held at the same location. At this time, ICE agents were called by the local police to respond to the scene. Upon ICE’s arrival, the Austin SWAT team arrived and secured the scene.

After a few hours, hostage negotiators talked everyone out of the house except for two. Both Ramiro Garduno-Sanchez and Juan Barcenas-Avila had already left the scene to go after the couple who had escaped. Police officers later caught up with Sanchez and Barcenas who were arrested and taken into custody.



Jim Kouri, CPP is currently fifth vice-president of the National Association of Chiefs of Police and he’s a staff writer for the New Media Alliance (thenma.org). He’s former chief at a New York City housing project in Washington Heights nicknamed “Crack City” by reporters covering the drug war in the 1980s. In addition, he served as director of public safety at a New Jersey university and director of security for several major organizations. He’s also served on the National Drug Task Force and trained police and security officers throughout the country. Kouri writes for many police and security magazines including Chief of Police, Police Times, The Narc Officer and others. He’s a news writer for TheConservativeVoice.Com and PHXnews.com. He’s also a columnist for AmericanDaily.Com, MensNewsDaily.Com, MichNews.Com, and he’s syndicated by AXcessNews.Com. He’s appeared as on-air commentator for over 100 TV and radio news and talk shows including Oprah, McLaughlin Report, CNN Headline News, MTV, Fox News, etc. His book Assume The Position is available at Amazon.Com. Kouri’s own website is located at http://jimkouri.us

About The Author Jim Kouri, CPP:
Jim Kouri, CPP is currently fifth vice-president of the National Association of Chiefs of Police and he's a columnist for The Examiner (examiner.com) and New Media Alliance (thenma.org). In addition, he's a blogger for the Cheyenne, Wyoming Fox News Radio affiliate KGAB (www.kgab.com). Kouri also serves as political advisor for Emmy and Golden Globe winning actor Michael Moriarty. He's former chief at a New York City housing project in Washington Heights nicknamed "Crack City" by reporters covering the drug war in the 1980s. In addition, he served as director of public safety at a New Jersey university and director of security for several major organizations. He's also served on the National Drug Task Force and trained police and security officers throughout the country. Kouri writes for many police and security magazines including Chief of Police, Police Times, The Narc Officer and others. He's a news writer and columnist for AmericanDaily.Com, MensNewsDaily.Com, MichNews.Com, and he's syndicated by AXcessNews.Com. Kouri appears regularly as on-air commentator for over 100 TV and radio news and talk shows including Fox News Channel, Oprah, McLaughlin Report, CNN Headline News, MTV, etc. To subscribe to Kouri's newsletter write to COPmagazine@aol.com and write "Subscription" on the subject line.
Website:http://jimkouri.us

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