Several charged in deadly alien smuggling ring – Port Isabel-South Padre Press


Special to the PRESS

A total of six people have been arrested on charges of alien smuggling, which resulted in the death of eight, announced U.S. Attorney Alamdar S. Hamdani.
The arrests came as part of Homeland Security Investigations’ (HSI) Operation Justice for All. The South Padre Island Police Department assisted in this investigation.
Those charged and taken into custody include Juan Manuel Tena, 39, Julia Isairis Torres, 37, Israel Torres Jr., 33, Erasmo Garcia III, 21, and Alexis Rafael Adorno, and Jose Refugio Torres, 26.
The 11-count indictment was returned Jan. 10 and unsealed upon the arrests this week.
According to the indictment, Tena was the alleged leader of the alien smuggling ring and coordinated a network of co-conspirators throughout the Southern District of Texas. Tena and his co-conspirators allegedly conspired to transport illegal aliens from the Rio Grande Valley to destinations within the United States.
As a result of that conspiracy, a total of eight aliens were killed and two others seriously injured, according to the charges.
The indictment alleges all engaged in a conspiracy to transport illegal aliens, resulting in death, and committed multiple counts of transporting illegal aliens, resulting in death.
Tena, Julia Torres, Israel Torres, Jose Torres and Garcia are all charged with the attempted smuggling of illegal aliens in March 2019 by motor vehicle from the Rio Grande Valley to Houston. The charges allege that during the failed attempt, a vehicle rolled over and caused the deaths of four non-U.S. citizens with serious injuries to one other.
The indictment also charges Tena along with Adorno with the attempted smuggling of illegal aliens in February 2022 by watercraft from South Padre Island to the Corpus Christi area. The watercraft allegedly capsized, four illegal aliens were killed and another seriously injured.

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