Man gets 5 years for human smuggling
26-year-old found leading group of illegal immigrants in Nov.
A 26-year-old man from Chiapas, Mexico, was sentenced Monday in a Tucson federal court to five years in prison for human smuggling, the U.S. Attorney's Office announced Tuesday.
Berlain "El Chato" Galvez Lopez was found guilty on Feb. 1 of three counts of bringing in illegal aliens for commercial advantage or private financial gain, said Bill Solomon, spokesman for the U.S. Attorney's Office.
In November, Tucson Sector Border Patrol agents from the Casa Grande Station tracked footprints for several miles in the West Desert that led to a group of four illegal immigrants. Galvez was among the group, Solomon said.
Agents learned that the three people traveling with Galvez had made arrangements with him to smuggle them across the U.S.-Mexico border for between $1,800 and $2,800 each. They were attempting to get to Colorado, Solomon said.
“I commend the Border Patrol agents who used their training and experience to track this group through the Arizona desert,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Ann Birmingham Scheel in a press release. “Border safety remains a top priority for the U.S. Attorney’s Office and for our law enforcement partners on the front line.”