An illegal alien from Honduras who raped a child after being released by a “sanctuary city” that refused to honor a detainer lodged by U.S. Customs and Immigration Enforcement (ICE) pleaded guilty Tuesday to illegal reentry into the U.S.
“Juan Ramon Vasquez, a citizen of Honduras, pleaded guilty today to illegal reentry after deportation,” U.S. Attorney William M. McSwain announced Wednesday in a statement.
“The facts of this case highlight the danger posed by the City of Philadelphia’s decision to disregard ICE detainers and release previously deported aliens from local custody,” McSwain said, recounting how Philadelphia’s defiance of federal authorities enabled the illegal alien to commit the rape of a minor:
“In May 2009, the defendant was deported from the United States. Thereafter, in March 2014, the defendant was found back in the United States by U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Immigration and Customs Enforcement (“ICE”) officers. At that time, Vasquez was in the custody of the Philadelphia Department of Prisons.
“The City of Philadelphia thereafter chose not to comply with a detainer lodged by ICE for the defendant, who was instead released from custody by the Philadelphia Department of Prisons. After his release, the defendant was rearrested and convicted for rape of a child and unlawful sexual contact with a minor. The defendant is currently serving a sentence of 8 to 20 years in state prison.”
As a result of Wednesday’s guilty plea, Vasquez faces up to an additional two years in prison, this time at a federal detention facility. He is scheduled to be sentenced on November 20, 2018, by the Honorable Nitza I. Quiñones Alejandro.
Vasquez would never have been able to sexually assault a child if Philadelphia had not given him “a free pass” to do so, U.S Attorney McSwain charged:
“Those of us in the law enforcement business should be doing everything in our power to protect vulnerable children from predators like Vasquez. Instead, this defendant received a free pass from the City of Philadelphia and its Department of Prisons, headed straight back into our community, and committed a heinous crime he never would have had the chance to commit had the City of Philadelphia complied with the ICE detainer.”
In July, ICE reported how a county in North Carolina declined an ICE detainer, allowing a convicted sex offender to roam the streets free for nearly a month, until federal agents captured the alien released by Orange County, NC. The Mexican national, who had previously pleaded guilty to sexually victimizing a pre-teen girl, was found and caught when he registered as a sex offender, in accordance with plea agreement.