• Ice criticizes sanctuary laws in murder of Federal Way teen

    By: Essex Porter

    Updated:

    Two people have been charged with first-degree murder in the death of 16-year-old Juan Carlos Con Guzman.

    Newly released court documents say Rudy Garcia-Hernandez and Carlos Iraheta-Vega "contacted Juan Carlos on SnapChat" and picked him up for a "pre-arranged fight to settle a dispute."

    But prosecutors allege they had "a plan to torture and kill him" and that they "beat the victim with a baseball bat and mercilessly chopped his neck repeatedly with a machete."

    U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement says Iraheta-Vega is an undocumented immigrant from El Salvador who arrived in the U.S. three years ago. And that he was arrested and released from the King County Jail last year despite a request from ICE to detain him.

    Asked if the current sanctuary policy puts the public in danger, Deputy Regional Immigration Enforcement Director Bryan Wilcox responded, "Absolutely, absolutely.  There's people getting arrested every day in the state that in many cases we're aware of them and we put detainers on them and they're ignored and the people get released and they go on to commit other atrocious acts."

    ICE is pushing for an end to the sanctuary policies that stymie cooperation from local law enforcement.

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    "ICE just wants the local jails and the local police to do their bidding, said Matt Adams of the Northwest Immigrant Rights Project.

    Adams says those ICE detainers have been ruled unconstitutional in our state.

    "If we kept everybody locked up there would be no crimes committed. But our government, our democracy rejects that as a principle. You are entitled to liberty unless the law requires you to be confined."

    So why doesn't ICE get judicial warrants that local authorities will comply with?

    "In the majority of these cases there is no federal equivalent crime for the crime of violence that they're being arrested for," Wilcox says.

    Prosecutors are requesting higher bail for the men accused of first-degree murder.

    They want a judge to raise it from $2 million to $3 million each.    
     

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