Wednesday, March 16, 2016

How a Suspected Murderer and Criminally Convicted Illegal Immigrant Avoided Deportation

Before Pablo A. Serrano-Vitorino became the suspect in a murder spree across two states, the man, a once-deported Mexican living in the United States illegally, was convicted of multiple crimes, across different agencies, but still free.

Serrano-Vitorino’s case involved a series of errors that kept him from being detained by federal immigration authorities, and from facing another deportation last year when he should have been removed from the country.

His case, experts say, showcases the precise communication required between local law enforcement agencies, and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), in order to keep tabs on criminally-convicted immigrants living in the country illegally — and how the slightest misstep could lead to tragedy.

“It should not be only ICE’s responsibility to make sure criminally-convicted aliens get on the path to deportation,” said Jessica Vaughan of the Center for Immigration Studies. “It is too big of a job. It sounds like there was an earlier opportunity for this guy to be in custody, and a combination of local agencies not stepping up to report him, and ICE missing the opportunity they had to deport him, gave this man the opportunity to commit these horrific...
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