Man wanted in connection to 2-year-old homicide investigation turned over to ICE officials

SAN DIEGO (KUSI) — A Mexican national wanted in his native country for a homicide committed almost two years ago was turned over Friday to Mexican law enforcement officials by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) at the San Ysidro Port of Entry.

Daniel Evaristo Soto-Hernandez, 35, was transferred to the custody of Mexican authorities by San Diego-based officers from ICE Enforcement and Removal Operations’ (ERO) Special Response Team. Soto is charged in a Mexican arrest warrant issued Feb. 9 with a fatal shooting that occurred Nov. 10, 2015, in Tijuana’s Colonia Jardin Dorado neighborhood.

According to Mexican law enforcement officials, Soto got into an argument with the victim over the payment for a motorcycle. The argument escalated to the point that Soto produced a firearm and shot the victim, who succumbed to his injuries while en route to the hospital.

Department of Homeland Security databases indicate Soto was admitted into the U.S. at the San Ysidro Port of Entry in January 2016 on a visitor visa, which authorized him to remain in the U.S. for one month. The following day, he was arrested by the Texas Department of Public Safety in Carson County, Texas, for possession of methamphetamine. On Aug. 22, 2016, Soto was convicted of felony charges for possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine and sentenced to 18 months in federal prison.

ERO officers originally encountered Soto March 29 at the federal prison in Big Spring, Texas, where he was serving his criminal sentence. At that time, ERO served Soto with a notice advising the agency intended to serve him with an administrative removal order based on his aggravated felony conviction. Following his release from federal prison, Soto was transferred to the Otay Mesa Detention Facility. On May 9, Mexican law enforcement officials alerted ERO officers in San Diego about the outstanding homicide warrant. On June 2, ERO executed the administrative removal order and repatriated Soto to Mexico.

“This was a callous and a ruthless act of violence,” said Gregory J. Archambeault, field office director for ERO San Diego. “Foreign fugitives should be on notice, if you attempt to escape justice by fleeing to the United States, we will seek you out and use our unique authorities to send you home to answer for your alleged crimes.”

Since Oct. 1, 2009, ERO has removed more than 1,789 foreign fugitives from the United States who were sought in their native countries for serious crimes, including kidnapping, rape and murder. ERO works with the ICE Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Office of International Operations, foreign consular offices in the United States, and Interpol to identify foreign fugitives illegally present in the United States.

Members of the public who have information about foreign fugitives are urged to contact ICE by calling the ICE tip line at 1 (866) 347-2423 or internationally at 001-1802-872-6199. They can also file a tip online by completing ICE’s online tip form. ERO coordinates the removal of criminals, foreign fugitives and others ordered deported.

Categories: Local San Diego News