Smuggler that led police on chase sentenced to significant prison term | USAO-SDTX

McALLEN, Texas – A 37-year-old Sullivan City resident has been ordered to federal prison after harboring individuals illegally in the country in harsh living conditions, announced U.S. Attorney Jennifer B. Lowery.

Emanuel Salinas Pleaded guilty May 14, 2021.  

Today, U.S. District Judge Randy Crane ordered he serve a total of 100 months in federal prison to be immediately followed by three years of supervised release. At the hearing, the court heard about the harsh living conditions to which the individuals were subjected. Judge Crane also considered the fact that some of them were unaccompanied minors, his record of convictions as well as the vehicle chase, during which he caused a collision.   

On Feb. 23, law enforcement was conducting surveillance of a residence suspected of harboring undocumented aliens in Edinburg. There, they observed a silver Jeep Grand Cherokee arrive and park outside the residence. Salinas was later determined to be the driver. Several individuals exited the residence and entered the Jeep, which departed and began travelling northbound before stopping at a parking area in San Carlos.

They attempted to conduct a consensual encounter with Salinas, but he immediately fled. He soon led authorities on a 20-mile vehicular pursuit. He did allow four people to exit the vehicle, but still had two others inside, one of whom was an unaccompanied minor. He then continued traveling in excess of 100 mph while weaving through traffic.

He ultimately collided with another vehicle in Edinburg.

Salinas admitted multiple aliens remained behind at the residence. Authorities discovered an additional 26 people, including another unaccompanied minor. The Edinburg location had foul conditions, to include trash piled up in the rooms and its septic tank overflowing onto the neighboring property.

Salinas has been and will remain in custody pending transfer to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility o be determined in the near future.

Customs and Border Protection conducted the investigation with the assistance of the Texas Department of Public Safety. Assistant U.S. Attorney Peter Brostowin prosecuted the case.

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