Salvadorian Man with Multiple Prior Removals Pleads Guilty to Illegally Reentering the United States | USAO-EDVA

ALEXANDRIA, Va. – A Salvadorian man with multiple previous convictions and removals pleaded guilty today to illegally reentering the United States subsequent to a conviction of an aggravated felony. 

According to court documents, in November 2000, Jose Neftali Gonzales, 48, pleaded guilty to distribution of cocaine. In November 2001, following a period of incarceration, Neftali Gonzales was removed from the United States at taxpayer expense. Sometime later, Neftali Gonzales illegally reentered the United States, and around August 2009 Neftali Gonzales was found at the Prince William County Adult Detention Center following an arrest in Prince William County for possession of schedule I or II controlled substances. He was convicted of felony possession of schedule I or II drug. In June 2010, Neftali Gonzales pleaded guilty to illegal reentry subsequent to conviction of an aggravated felony and was sentenced to 20 months in prison. In August 2011, Neftali Gonzales was again removed from the United States at taxpayer expense. In August 2020, Neftali Gonzales was again discovered and arrested in the Eastern District of Virginia by ICE officers and the U.S. Marshals Service. 

Neftali Gonzales is scheduled to be sentenced on March 3, 2021, and faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison. Actual sentences for federal crimes are typically less than the maximum penalties. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after taking into account the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

G. Zachary Terwilliger, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia, and Matthew Munroe, Acting Director of the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) Washington Field Office, made the announcement after U.S. District Judge Anthony J. Trenga accepted the plea.

Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Alicia A. Bove and Assistant U.S. Attorney Marc J. Birnbaum are prosecuting the case.

A copy of this press release is located on the website of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia. Related court documents and information are located on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia or on PACER by searching for Case No. 1:20-cr-187.

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